I have learned something this week. It is the same lesson from two different sources.
I have learned that things are not what they seem.
Maybe I should have written that things are not always what they seem, but I think that in this one case it may be accurate to say that things are not, ever, what they seem.
There is always something that lies beneath.
On the surface what we see is beauty, or organization, or mature spirituality. And I am not trying to say that these things are a fake, a cover-up, or a sham. What I am trying to say is that it isn't the whole story. There are things that lie below that translucent area which is clear and visible and sparkling. While the unseen isn't apparent, it is important; it gives substance to what is seen, it gives weight to what is seen, and it sometimes forcefully determines what is seen in the end. It may be shocking, and it may even be devastating.
There is a family here that has been left behind. A mom and her girls are now missing something; they are incomplete, in an earthly sense. And I don't think anyone saw it coming. We can be very good at appearances. And yet...what good is it to look good on the outside but be unraveling on the inside?
As for being the one who is looking? Look deeper. Don't take what you see for granted. Try to get the whole story. This involves knowing people, which is much harder, time-consuming, maybe even inconvenient. But really knowing others and letting them really know you could be part of your saving grace.