Honor The Sacredness Of Every Soul
One day some years ago, my husband and I ordered lunch from the drive-through lane of our local McDonald’s. When we got to the window to receive our food, an interesting scene played out.
The food server didn’t smile and said very little to us. When we asked for some napkins, she seemed annoyed. My husband was his usual polite self despite the lack of interaction with our server.
I, on the other hand, became offended. “Don’t you know we’re the customer?” I said in an unhappy voice. “You could be a little more courteous,” I announced. To wit, she slammed closed the window. My husband looked at me and we drove off.
As we headed down the road, he softly said, “Do you feel better now?” “No,” I replied. As we drove on, he said, “Honey, why did you get so upset? Don’t you think that maybe she was just having a bad day? Couldn’t you have given her a little slack?”
Of course, he was right. He usually is right when he speaks his truth to me. I started to think about that young woman whom I perceived to be rude and uncaring. What if she were a single mother that had worked another job before coming into McDonald’s to work that day? What if she was abused by someone in her life? What if she was not able to pay her rent? All of this could have been weighing on her. I, regrettably, judged her without knowing anything about her.
Since then I have found the keys to my own inner joy, and I have often thought of that young woman and my behavior toward her. Why couldn’t I have given her some slack?
I now know I showed up that day with ego need and not ego strength. I felt righteous in making her wrong because I knew I was right. I was the customer, after all. I reacted to her “slighting” of us with unconscious ego need. Little did I realize that for that young woman, I likely contributed negatively to what may have already been a bad day for her. If only I could redo that scene.
She is a sacred soul. She deserves to be honored as a sacred soul. Every soul is sacred and every soul matters.
When I chose joy, I took this beautiful principle of wisdom into my heart. Its lovely, wise counterpart is to show up with ego strength, not ego need. These two concepts working together are joy producers.
No matter the income level, social status, or educational standing, we should honor the sacredness of every soul. God gave us two ears and one mouth so that we listen more than we talk. Listening to others is a way of honoring them. Giving a sincere and simple compliment is a way of honoring others. Offering to give our time to run an errand is a way to honor others. Simply saying hello to others as we pass by is a way of honoring them.
And not reacting to the ego needs of others is a way of honoring them. It’s a form of forgiveness. We can all have a bad day. Even on good days, many of us unconsciously play out our own hidden insecurities buried deep within us. We have to be right. We have to win. We are unconsciously protecting our deep feelings of shame, unworthiness, and a cast of other limiting feelings.
Once we become aware this ego neediness shows up in many people, we can begin living at a higher level of emotional consciousness. We can remain calm, get in touch with our inner stillness, dispel judgment, and, indeed, give the other person some slack.
This beautiful principle doesn’t end with our calm reaction. That’s where it begins to manifest itself into joy. The real joy comes when we truly do see the beauty, potential, and uniqueness of every person. Accept each person as individual testimonies to the unlimited creativity of God. Honor them with your kindness, generosity, and love. Look past their ego need. See their soul and honor each one.