Exit 114. Things are not always what they seem, but…

Things are not always what they seem.

I started going to a new church in November, as I’ve mentioned before.  One time when I was there, I noticed a woman out of the corner of my eye who looked like someone I knew, the mother of a close friend.  When I looked at her straight on, though, I could tell it wasn’t my friend’s mother, just someone who looked like her.

Last week after church, I heard someone behind me calling my name, in a tone of voice that indicated that the speaker was surprised to see me.  I turned around and was surprised and a bit confused to see my friend’s mother, the one who I thought I had seen months ago.  She was with the woman who I thought looked like her, and she said that this woman was her sister, and she was picking her up from church because they were going to do something together that afternoon.  I said that I had noticed the resemblance.

Things are not always what they seem, but sometimes things are pretty close to what they seem.

Maybe there’s an illustration in this.  To many people, my life looks great.  I have a job, and a lot of the kids there say I’m their favorite teacher.  I have friends.  I’m a homeowner.  I’m good looking… at least old ladies tell me so.  But underneath, it doesn’t feel so great.  I feel lonely, with the whole still-being-single-at-my-age thing, and I feel like I have a hard time being around some of my friends, because of my very different lifestyle and beliefs.  And I feel just as out of place among many people who do share my beliefs.  I often feel angry and frustrated that my life didn’t turn out the way I thought it would be.  I feel like I was sold a bill of goods by some of the people influential in my spiritual development in my 20s.  My great life isn’t what it seems.

But maybe my life is pretty close to being great, just like how the woman who looked like my friend’s mom turned out to be my friend’s aunt.  All those things really aren’t significant, and focusing on the negative just ends up being destructive in the long run.

This probably isn’t a very good analogy, but I’m tired and cranky and I needed something to write about this week.  Good night. 🙂


  1. It is a good analogy and sometimes the way I feel is pretty similar! On another track, ‘seeing’ your mother’s friend, even though it was her sister, was, in some strange form, a glimpse into the future.

  2. I remember when I was in my 40s and found out some things about my childhood, I thought, “All my life I’ve believed a lie.” I also felt the church had lied to me and not taught me the truth about God and living the Christian life; because real life with God wasn’t like they said it would be. Their version was a perfect life I never found.

    In my 50s, like you, I was angry my life had not been what I had wanted. I knew I had done nothing to deserve such a life. I was really angry. Now, in my 60s, I see the hand of God all through my life, drawing me ever closer to him. Mental pain will do that, if you let it. It can also make you leave him, if you let it.

    I read once that if you want to die, it is because you have lost something or someone you love more than God. That thing or person is your idol. God alone should be enough. I have finally found out God is indeed enough. I finally found the joy and peace I used to read about. I’m a very slow learner, but I thank God he is patient.

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