Inside Out


“Kids at school were nice in class, but none of them ever took the time to get to know me.  I also hate how I look.  I look too young for my age and that affects how they see me”.
– Braden

“I’m so sad that they missed out on who you really were.  Those who took the time to actually know you became loyal, true friends for life, and saw what an amazing guy you were. People get busy looking at their phones and too often they miss out on real relationships.” – Braden’s Mom

By Cathy Speed

A few weeks ago, Caitlin and I went to a mother/ daughter Christmas party, which ended with a wild and crazy white elephant gift exchange.  As people began choosing presents, they so often reached for the most beautiful packages, the shiniest wrapping. Yet we found some of the very best gifts had been wrapped in plain brown paper.

Most of us tend to look at the “outside wrappings” when we see people.  If we could train our eyes to begin to see people “Inside-Out” we will find something so amazing…

We’ll begin to see people not just as bodies walking past us in the hallways at school or work, but as hearts! Hearts that long for us look past their “wrappings”, and see their souls. That’s what people are hungry for. It’s what Braden was hungry for. Our son was so deeply relationship- driven. He needed relationship like he needed air to breathe. Not surface, but real heart relationship. He ached to be seen… REALLY seen… known deeply for who he was. He had people to talk to in class. He wasn’t being bullied this year. He simply needed someone to stop and actually see him, know him, reach into his life.

Braden needed his peers, the kids, to see past the wrapping paper of his outside… to see him, and to know the gift he was.

1 Samuel 16:7 says, “People judge by the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart”.

So what can WE do?
In our culture which is so “Appearance driven”, with perfectly crafted social media images, we can actively teach our kids to be real and authentic. Take off our own masks of perfection.  We can teach them to look past what they see, into the hearts around them each day.

We can begin to teach them, and to learn ourSELVES, to see people “INside out”.

Prayer for Readers:
Lord, I ask that you would help us to learn to see INTO the hearts of those around us. We so often miss the most beautiful gifts You send, as we hurry through our lives looking only at the surface.

12 thoughts on “Inside Out

  1. No one but God really knows the hearts of other people…how they are hurting & maybe longing for something that is missing. We all need to be more aware of that fact & be able to strive to be more like Jesus when He loves each of us just as we are & to communicate that to those our lives touch.
    This should be a New Years resolution for each of us.
    Love you all & praying for you many times a day….keeping you utmost in my heart & prayers.
    Love, Mom

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t have the words or the gifts y’all have found–gifts of your hearts in sharing your grief in such thought provoking ways. You are making a difference in many life’s. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for this analogy Cathy ❤️New Years Resolution: To see people Inside/Out and be more aware of my own judgmental attitudes and responses. There’s always a deeper “story”. Love you guys💕

    Liked by 1 person

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