9 Dec

As we go through our lives, we meet lots of people.  Some become friends, some just acquaintances, and some we meet once and never see again.  We see people in passing, and interact with them in lots of different situations.  Most of us think we are good judges of character but sometimes it’s not easy to know what people really are.  There is the old saying of a “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” meaning sometimes someone looks one way, when in actuality they are completely different.  We meet people like that from time to time.  There is always a reason they are hiding behind what we see, and often those reasons are destructive.  It’s hard to see behind a disguise.  Sheep seem so friendly and docile that even if a little dark fur is sticking out under the white curls we might not notice it until the damage has been done.

It’s good to be trusting of others.  It opens doors for us and helps us feel comfortable in our interactions.  But when we have a trusting nature, we can also be manipulated by those whose intentions are not noble.  We might befriend someone we think we can trust, only to discover they aren’t trustworthy at all.  If that happens, we may blame ourselves for falling for a lie, but it’s not our fault when someone else makes bad decisions.  We aren’t fools because we trusted them.  Until we know that someone is wearing a disguise it’s appropriate to give them the benefit of the doubt.  When that is abused, and we discover we’ve been duped, we may be hurt, but we’ll learn more and can make wiser decisions going forward.

If we get tangled up with a wolf and get hurt, we may decide not to trust anyone anymore.  But that never works.  Most people are honest and deserve our trust and respect.  If we judge everyone based on the few who choose badly, we only end up hurting ourselves.  We can’t live in a vacuum, and we need others in our lives.  No matter what’s happened, we’ll find a way to recover, and use the information we’ve learned going forward.  We can be brave enough to allow others to get close to us despite the experience.  We are in control and we can make excellent decisions and judgments.  There are a lot of genuine sheep in our lives.  There are people who care about us and want what’s best for us.  We can’t disregard our good relationships with them because there are a few wolves waiting in the wings.

Today if you’ve discovered you’ve been manipulated or in some way treated dishonestly, and you’re hurt, learn from what you’ve experienced.  You know more now than you did, and you can go forward with confidence.  You can still trust those around you, and allow them to get close to you.  There are a lot of good sheep in your world.  Don’t let one wolf turn you against those who love and care for you.

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