There are those who will extend kindness to anyone, wherever they go. They leave a trail of sunshine. The sort of teachers that are not intimidating but encouraging when it’s clear that you’re not nearly as smart as they are. The kind of friend who’s a genius and doesn’t scoff at your blank expression. They speak as though you’re not all that different from them; you’re not stupid, you just have more to learn and they can’t wait to lift you up. It’s not look what I have and what you don’t, it’s here, let me show you. The have a faith in you that is not based on merit and yet it makes you feel like there’s nothing you can’t do. Everything they touch turns to gold.
Then there are people who are highly selective in who they are loving towards. Ignorance is unforgivable. “See, I’m actually such a nice person!” But only to those deemed worthy. Only to those who are as rational, as accomplished, as well-read. “We” is a group held above all others and no spot is guaranteed. Having an opinion is good, but too much fervour is not recommended. Having conversations concerning the evolution of jazz over glasses of Moscato may earn you some respect but you must do so without pretentious mien (who uses ‘mien’ anyway??). You have to be your best self, always. It’s this rhetoric of: are you on my level yet?
We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please our neighbours for their good, to build them up.
– Romans 15:1-2