Jesus tells us we are to love our enemies. Let us take that as far as it will go. Everyone and everything is created by God. Everyone and everything is our neighbor. While it is easy to love the nice people, it is very hard to love the mean ones – but Jesus tells us they are exactly the ones we must be nice to.
They are the ones who need it the most.
So what about insects? Why do we consider a butterfly beautiful but a beetle creepy? Why do we celebrate one and crush the other?
Are you ready to love a wasp, or a roach, or a spider?
Are you ready to see them as created by the same Creator that made fireflies and lightning bugs?
Stay with this a moment. Breathe it in.
Then go further, and yet back.
Are you willing to be loving and gentle with the person who is attacking you or your friend? Are you willing to show mercy to the bigot, the racist, the homophobe?
Are you in a place in your head where you can love them for who they are, right now?
Do you have a space in your heart where you can see them as being the way God made them because He needs them this way, right now?
How about your own thoughts, your own bad habits? Are you able to love them, and see them as teachers?
How about your inability to get up early enough to go exercise? Your habit of spending all you make? Your love of greasy, fatty food? Your need to control others? Your need to be right?
Everything is a teacher. Everything is a gift, a guest in this house that is your soul, your life.
Compassion is a way of living, a way of loving. It is honoring each being, right where they are. It is seeing the beauty hidden behind all the walls, the veils, the shields that we all put up to prevent ourselves from being whole.
It is seeing the lotus growing out of the muck. It is knowing it is there, even if you can’t see it. It is about the potential. And it is about the present.
Our defenses keep us safe, we think. They keep us from having to get too close to ourselves and seeing ourselves in each other.
We are called to communion, to a union-with. We are called to wholeness. This is within ourselves, with every person, with every created being, and with God, the Creator of all.