I find it intriguing how, as I fall more in love with God, I fall more in love with people. I love their faces, their hands, the way they are made, and how they move.
One of my favorite exercises is to take mental photographs of people I meet. Frozen for a moment, in black and white, I notice them more. I feel them, as I feel pieces of art as I walk through a gallery. The little lady, her vintage shawl pulled close to her wrinkled face, patiently turned in the direction her bus will approach. The powerful man, sun rippling off the waves of his dark muscles as he walks down the sidewalk, the fist of his tiny son clenched on one of his long fingers. The intent, dirty face of the culvert-layer, shadowed by his hard hat. The group of laughing college kids, nearly perfect in their youthfulness, but furtively deciphering where they fit in the dynamic. The woman, alone at her table in the coffee shop, loudly informing the hapless recipient of her phone call the unfairness of the traffic citation she received. The man with a grungy plastic bag sitting on the bench at the corner of the park... his blank yet searching eyes.
In each person, I see their Maker's regal reflection.
In each person, I see myself.
I might be developing a frail grasp of what it means to be a part of this reflection. In a large sense, individually, we are broader, deeper, larger, and more textured because of our being in relationship with God and people. To some extent, we comprise each other, help each other find ourselves, and find ourselves in each other. Just as our the relationship of our Maker's personality is nearly impossible to dissect, without people we almost cease to be ourselves.
In losing relationship with someone, we face the fear that, irretrievably, a part of us ceases to exist.