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CCHF Shalom Challenge Day Two: Do You Know Someone Who’s Mean or Difficult?

CCHF Shalom Challenge Day Two: Do You Know Someone Who's Mean or Difficult? 1
Today’s challenge: Turn pain into compassion
Next time someone hurts you, think about the REAL reason behind their act; they’re in pain. Remind yourself of what’s triggering their behavior so that instead of feeling hurt, you feel compassion.  
Disclaimer: This refers to behavior that’s within the range of normal. Ongoing anger or abuse needs to be addressed professionally.
Do you have anyone in your life who can be mean, difficult, or just cold toward you?

We all have difficult people in our lives. How do we deal with these situations, and how can we create a little more shalom between us?

Allow me to share with you a story I once heard…

A young boy and his father once went to a pet store to buy a puppy for the boy’s birthday. The owner showed them 5 little furry puppies in a pen, but the boy noticed that the pen next to it had one that looked just like the others.

So the boy asked the store owner, “Why’s this one all alone?” The owner said, “Well, unfortunately he was born with a deformed leg, and we’ll need to put him to sleep.”

The boy said, “You’re going to kill this little puppy??”

The owner said, “Well you have to understand, he’ll never be able to run or play with a boy like you.”

The boy paused, and whispered something into his father’s ear. The father turned to the owner, and said. “We would like to buy the one with the bad leg please.”

The owner was shocked. he said, “But for the same price you could have one of the healthy ones, why do you want that one??”

The boy lifted the bottom of his pants and showed the owner a brace. He said, “Mister… I want this one…because I know what he’s going through.”

When you can SEE what someone’s really going through, it can help you understand what’s really driving their behavior.

The Mishnah in Avos says:
Don’t judge your friend until you’ve been in his place.

Your family member, friend, or co-worker who’s giving you a hard time is often going through something that you can’t SEE, and most likely their behavior has nothing to do with you – but rather something they’re personally struggling with.

If you can SEE
beneath the surface
beneath the rudeness
beneath the cold shoulder
beneath the bad attitude
You’ll often discover that there’s a little person who’s scared, anxious or in pain, and going through something difficult – just like you have in the past.

Try to see this, and watch as it helps you become more understanding, more forgiving and create more shalom bein adam l’chavero.


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