What Color is Life?

Life Lesson #20: Life is not all black and white


I used to think Life was black and white. Actions were simply right or wrong. Period. (Some are.) People either “got it”–or they were doing something to stifle their intelligence because my the answer was sooooo obvious.


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Festival of Tables HERE.



I thought the young mother in the grocery store screaming at her children needed to be more patient–and teach those kids some manners.


And the preacher who bribed his little girl with a new bike so she’d go to church–and everyone would think his was the “perfect Christian family”?  Well, he needed to be a better father–and he really needed to get over himself.


I thought the overweight, cigarette-smoking man buying lottery tickets should skip a few meals and save his money–and then he could afford to drive something other than that obnoxiously-loud rattle-trap truck of his.


It wasn’t pretty, folks. Actually, it was pretty ugly.  I just didn’t realize how “holier than thou” I was…and I was only in my 20s!


And then Life happened and I began to realize that things were not so black and white after all. Oh, I’ve seen a lot of the proverbial grey areas…but I can tell you from experience–now–that there are some areas that are full of colors. I know. I’ve seen them.


The riotous reds of tragedy…

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ALOHA tablescape HERE.



…the turquoise of trials–and stubbornness.

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Field Trip to Replacements Ltd. HERE



The dark blues of grief…

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Heart-Stopping Beautiful China tablescape HERE



…and the bright ones of determination.

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Say Cheese! tablescape HERE



I’ve seen the purples of new beginnings…

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Seasonal Simplicity tablescape HERE



…and hard work. Commitment.

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A New Friend tablescape HERE



And I’m still learning to embrace the golden yellows of patience–with others..and myself.

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Thanksgiving tablescape HERE



I now know the young mother in the grocery store may have been exhausted, doing the best she could, because the children’s father was working a 60-hour/week, 100% commission job–or in prison–or Afghanistan.


And the preacher was struggling to find normalcy because his wife was on the verge of a mental breakdown, and he was trying to hold his family, his church–and himself–together.


The lottery ticket buyer?  What if I’d learned his wife had died suddenly–and the stress had caused him to start smoking again after a decade–and he’d put on all the extra weight eating nothing but fast food because “Mama” always did the cooking–and he was buying his first-ever lottery ticket in hopes he’d get lucky and have some way to pay all the medical bills she’d incurred…because he’d already sold the good car–and he prayed his old truck would hold up awhile longer.


Black and white?  I think not.


Lord, make me teachable–moldable–obedient. May I not be quick to jump to conclusions–to judge others. Situations are so often not what they first seem…

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Help me be always grateful for having my eyes opened to sinfully judgmental attitudes–and ever quick to keep that tendency “in check.” May I extend the same compassion and acceptance to others that You so freely extend to this unworthy follower. Thank you for using something as unexpected and lovely as colorful linens to remind me to love others as I want to be loved.

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Pink Thanksgiving tablescape HERE



Anyone else care to admit to a bent toward judgment? We’re here to encourage each other–and hold each other accountable…


31 Days 2013-001 This is part of a 31-day series.  All of the posts are available HERE.



  1. I remind myself how much I dislike being judged…when I think about things so long and hard before I make a decision…and never want to make someone else feel that way…and I certainly don’t want the whole world to think about things the same way I do…that would be so boring…and we would miss out on the things that make the world so bright with the colors of individuals!

  2. A perfect example of judging without knowing is the unkind person who posted a nasty note on my 30 something young niece’s car when she parked in a handicapped parking spot and walked into the store with her toddler daughter. This mean person hurt our niece terribly who suffers from PNE. She’s in constant pain, has had numerous surgeries and can not have more children. All this person saw was a healthy young mother with her toddler in tow using a what he termed a questionable handicapped sign not knowing that the act of walking alone is a dreadful pain for her at times. She tries to act as normally as possible in front of her daughter. Do not judge because you have no idea what that “healthy” “normal” person is really experiencing.

  3. Susan you have such a gift for incorporating deep, spiritual messages into your posts. What a creative way to share beautiful colors and tablescapes–tying in the topic of judging others. I love this post and I totally agree. The idea of seeing life in strict black and white terms makes it too easy to judge others harshly, which I’ve always found to be such a hypocritical quality of people who aspire to be more like Christ….What a great post.