I just finished watching the most hilarious video of a kid who had his wisdom teeth removed. For some reason he responded in a humorous way to the anesthesia that was used. He was hysterical. You’ve probably seen a similar video floating around the internet in recent years. Several times he stopped his random ranting to say “Mom, my eyes are leaking! Why are my eyes leaking?” He was crying about everything and in his interpretation he thought he was leaking.
People leak in all kinds of ways. Tears are only one way. In fact, I would even go so far as to say that people leak all the time. They leak just about everywhere they go.
Now before you go thinking I’m being crass let me assure you I’m not, well maybe just a little bit.
Leaking people are those who have a leak in their internal plumbing system and cant keep it from spilling out onto anybody near by. Just like a leaking pipe drips on the nearest surface, a leaking individual drips on the nearest person. Things that are best dealt with “inside the pipe” now are flowing “outside the pipe” and the result is that everyone gets wet.
I think you understand this better than you’d admit.
Let’s be honest, we all deal with the person in the store who is irritable and intrusive. They are irate at being inconvenienced and don’t hesitate to take it out on the nearest sales clerk. We’ve seen this. (Maybe we’ve been that leaky person?) How about the co-worker who is deeply defensive and having a conversation with them turns into some sort of competition where they have to be declared the winner of the most recent dialog. There are those in our lives who make family gatherings or parties, well, let’s say…like a game. You try to avoid them because everything topic of conversation or issue of the moment revolves around them or keeping them happy. This is just a sampling of leaky people.
In life we are all on our own journey to…wherever it is we think we want to go. What do we do when someone else’s journey intersects with our own and they leak all over us? How do we handle it when other people who spill out unresolved relational, physical, emotional or spiritual issues all over us? I know you know what I’m talking about now.
Surely, you’ve said a time or two, “I can’t stand that person.” or “I just want to get away from him.” or “I seriously couldn’t take another moment with her, she is exhausting.” Other peoples’ leaks keep us from having peaceful homes, job environments, neighborhoods, churches, social gatherings and schools. Leaky people tend to get us all worked up reveal our own plumbing issues.
Here’s the most important thing to remember when dealing with a leaky person: You leak too.
We are all leaky pipes in the plumbing of society. You may be more aware of your leak and are diligently trying fix your plumbing, but you too have done your share of leaking.
Here’s the second thing to remember when dealing with a leaky person: Try to leak something good on them.
We all have a choice of how we respond when faced with leaky people. What will your attitude be? Find the most radical way to leak something good on others who don’t seem to deserve it. It might surprise you.
Making eye contact with one who is constantly invasive. Listening completely to discern the real complaint of a negative person and seek to resolve to underlying issue instead of avoiding them. Telling someone the truth, candid and beneficial honesty, to a destructive soul who wreaks havoc can be the most good they’ve received in a long time. Doing a kind deed in an unexpected way for the most un-admired person. Face conflict with humility and gentleness when dealing with a demanding personality instead of hiding, especially when the overall good of others is at stake. Pray for reckless and self seeker in quiet and unknown ways. You get the idea.
Find radical ways to leak something good. Remember, you leak too.
Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers all the wrongs. ~ Proverbs 10:12