I don't like bugs. I hate bugs. I don't know where this comes from because, being raised with three brothers, catching bugs was a daily occurance during our summer vacations. My brother, Rick, liked bugs so much that once when he was sick, I bought about 20 grasshoppers from a neighbor kid to cheer him up. Since I didn't have a jar, we put them in my lunchbox. When I got home, there he was, tucked in my parents' bed so he could watch TV in comfort. Rick loved his get-well gift! Then we heard my mom coming down the hall. We shoved the lunchbox under the bed. After she completed her nursing rounds, we pulled the container back out. Ummm, turns out we hadn't closed the lid all the way. My parents never did find out why there were so many grasshoppers getting into our house that year!
Perhaps my fear began after I watched a few sci-fi movies about giant bugs. The movie Them! and another about a giant tarantula, left me with the deep impression that bugs are our enemy! To this day, I cover my eyes if a movie has bugs in it. And, I don't care how silly this makes me look, either.
So you can imagine the scene last night when my daughter and I were driving home with the windows open and discovered a beetle type bug in the car. It started on her side and she shooed it away. Next, it was climbing up the windshield right in front of me. I tried to get it on a piece of paper held in one hand, while holding the steering wheel in the other. Of course, it fell off and we couldn't find it for a few minutes. Then she saw it on the steering wheel. I went to shoo it and it landed on me. That's when the screaming and hysterical laughing began. It flew around her head a few times. It was crazy and creepy and funny. But I also didn't want to get into an accident because of this darn bug.
That's when I decided I had to change our perspectives. I told my daughter we had to give this bug a name (George) and make it our mascot. It would be "our" bug friend. Of course, this was quite nonsensical but somehow, the crisis was over. Even though we couldn't find our bug, it no longer was bugging us.
This morning I got to thinking about people. Sometimes people bug me. Usually, I love to be with people....all sorts. But sometimes I feel short-tempered and irritable and intolerant. It might not have anything to do with the person at all, but may be because I am tired, hungry, not feeling well, or whatever (yep, exactly like a two year old!). I have a friend who laughs me out of my bad temper. I value that about her.
George made me think about unity. How much easier would it be for me to uphold unity in the body of Christ, if I just changed MY perspective. If I changed the way I look at the person who is bugging me and see them through our Father's eyes. If I began to look for the good instead of the bad. If I kept focused on their value instead of my own dislikes. If I embraced rather than avoided.
I think I am thankful for George. While I hope he is gone from my life for good, I hope the lesson will remain.