I ADMIT IT: SOME OF US PARENTS/ADULTS CAN BE PRETTY IMMATURE

I’m sure I’m not speaking about your parents. (;

Regardless, there are plenty of us (me at the top of the list) who have had some pretty bad lapses in judgement.

Immaturity was my biggest lapse.

What made me immature? Entitlement. My religious beliefs were right. If you didn’t agree, you were wrong—I didn’t accept you. I knew what family and marriage were supposed to look like. If you didn’t agree, you were wrong—I didn’t accept you. My political views were right. If you didn’t agree, you were wrong—I didn’t accept you. My flag was superior. Even my skin color further proved my superiority. Yea, that one I can’t even explain myself. I judged. I demanded my way. I hurt people. Like I said, I was very immature.

Recognizing my immaturity was the 2nd best decision I ever made. Changing said immaturity was the 1st.

I’m a Christian. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m white. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m straight. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m a vegetarian. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m southern. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m a wife. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m a mother. I chose to spend time with people who weren’t.

I’m not a college graduate. I chose to spend time with people who were.

I’m not calm. I chose to spend time with people who were.

I’m not daring. I chose to spend time with people who were.

I’m sure you get the picture. To sum it up, I surrounded myself with amazingly diverse people, which further reinforced how far from superior I actually was.

I grew.

Thank God for reality checks. Now, my life is full of wonder and excitement. I thrive on differences. Oddly enough, I find myself repulsed by anyone who reminds me of the narrow-minded, immature person I used to be.

Who wants to be around someone who is judgmental? Not me.

Who wants to be around someone who is arrogant? Not me.

Who wants to be around someone who is always right? Not me.

Who wants to be around someone who is hateful? Not me.

Who wants to be around someone who is immature? Not me.

Be smart. Don’t follow immature footsteps. Be better. Live big. MATURE. Continually grow by learning from others. Embrace what makes all of us different. Don’t settle for immaturity by only surrounding yourself with people who think, act, and look exactly like you do. Challenge your way of thinking.

Labels are meaningless. They divide. They hurt. They belittle. They hinder growth. Labels are the catalyst for an immature society. Putting others down only makes us the lesser. Take note of those who hold tight to their labels and divisions. They’re always right; therefore, they have ceased to grow. They remain immature. They remain unhappy.

My prayer is that each and every one of you will learn from my mistakes. Reject immaturity. Reject hate. Reject narrow-minded points of view. Stand tall for what you believe in, but do it in a way that leaves room to learn from the diversity that surrounds you. Be yourself, always. But be you in a way that shows others respect. Be mature. Accept diversity—embrace it! And above all, stay rooted in love by rejecting hate.

You are the future. It’s up to you to lead the way. Young or old, you can start today.

OK, I’m off my soapbox. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want to hear from you. Talk to me. I want to share your success stories. Tell me how embracing diversity has made your life better. You never know, you could be the spark that ignites change in someone else.

If you enjoyed this post, I’d be very grateful if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter or Facebook. Thank you!

I’m looking forward to hearing from you soon!

~ Kerie