Imagination Station

I really enjoy history. I especially enjoy well done movies about historical people and events. To be honest, it's not all about the facts.  I love the costumes, hair and make up as much as I enjoy the story.

I love historical movies because I really love gaining perspective into the timeline, the decision making process and the struggle that went into implementing whatever decision was made.  I enjoy learning WHY people acted the way they did and how they felt about making the particular decision they made. No matter what my previous thoughts were, I invariably end up gaining compassion for them...even if I completely disagreed with their decision.

The movie Lincoln is one of my favorites.  Going into the movie I had a cautious admiration of the man.  My husband grew up in Alabama and his education regarding Abraham Lincoln was vastly different than my own...so I had long since given up my hero worship.

It's hard for me to identify with someone like Abraham Lincoln, which makes it easy to judge him harshly.  I grew up in a culture where Honest Abe was practically a Saint.  But he wasn't.  He was a human being who agonized over his decisions...who operated in character defects that he developed as a result of his life experiences and who sometimes made questionable, or downright wrong, decisions. He wasn't sure of himself.  He had regrets. He was admittedly a fallible human being who had human being feelings, emotions and thoughts.  In many ways he was like me and I'm thankful for the opportunity to learn that.  It gives me a broader scope of imagination to draw from in dealing with people in my life.  It makes me better able and more inclined to empathize with the people that I "do life" with.

It's extremely easy to judge people for/by their decisions and make assumptions about what their intentions were and what they meant by them.  I can struggle and agonize over having to make a decision, only to judge someone else's decision as though they easily arrived at theirs because they are a jerk or are insincere.

The thing is we're all just people. I make wrong decisions sometimes, based on whatever character defect I'm operating in...everyone does...it's what we do. So if I know the sting of realizing I took the wrong path and having to face the consequences...why am I so hard on others when they do? I shouldn't be. And just because I disagree with someone else's decision doesn't mean it's wrong anyway.

God has blessed me with an amazing imagination, and by extension...the gift of empathy. I'm thankful for this gift and I intend to take the time to imagine what people are feeling and going through, and fully humanize them in my mind...so compassion for them can guide my treatment of them.

:)

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