There is a parable that appears in the Gospel of Matthew that has frankly always irked me. I am going to summarize it really quickly, and forgive me I am far from a biblical scholar. The parable of the generous employer. The employer hires farm workers to help with the harvest at different times of the day. At the end of the day all the workers line up and every man receives the same wage. Every man no matter how long he labored, receives enough to feed and take care of himself and family.
Because I am not a biblical scholar, I will leave the interpretations of grace, generosity and redemption to them. However I was thinking about this parable a lot yesterday while I was lying in bed. I had hit a point of exhaustion and needed to rest. There is a lot going on right now and I left Adam to handle a lot of things, and I felt worthless, useless and selfish for taking time to be in bed.
I started thinking about this parable differently, what if all the workers are just different aspects, different expressions of myself. Sometimes I show up bright and early and work the whole day and some days I am glad to sleep in and work a few hours. But I value that person that works the whole day so much more then that person that needs to or even chooses to spend time resting, relaxing or resting. At the same time both are expressions of me, both are me and if I truly want to live my life like I am valued and love able, I need to accept and embrace all of those expressions of me.
What does that look like? How do I change that internal dialogue that constantly comes back and tells me my illness makes me inferior to who I was before? How do I stop that comparison? I have no idea. Attempting to change that internal dialogue, that constant chatter is something that evolves slowly for me. That being said I have learned the best way to change that internal dialogue is to make different choices, even if it is for a moment. It adds up and slowly those little gremlins dissolve into the light.
At that moment when Adam asked what he could do, instead of going into a rant about how I felt worthless and apologizing. I simply said "please, take care of the house in such a way that I don't need to worry about getting it ready for painting." Magically, Adam got up and headed to the house to take care of moving furniture, removing screws, remaining pictures and all the other little things. Magically things got done and handled and no one fell apart. Yes I still got to spend the day with that internal dialogue but I knew that making that simple choice would start to shift it.
That one simple choice gave a voice to my worth, and acceptance to the fact that I am not simpy worth it on the days I labor all day. My worth doesn't change and it is time I started to be my own generous employer.
Question of the day: How can you honor an aspect of yourself that you don't typically value, even if just for a moment?