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Dangerous assumptions and little monkeys

The one time I hallucinated and lived to tell about it

Some years ago I was recovering in the hospital from major cancer surgery and woke from a nice nap to see a good friend sitting by the side of my bed.

She and her daughter had dropped by to visit and cheer me up.

They’d brought along a monkey that they’d dressed up for my enjoyment. The little creature was entertaining and had me laughing in minutes.

I told them how much I appreciated seeing their little pet, as I hadn’t seen a monkey in a little dress before. Did he have a name?

The room got really quiet and after a quick prayer with me, my friends left.

I found out later that the “monkey” was my friend’s baby granddaughter and she and her daughter had eagerly looked forward to introducing me to the baby.

It was the morphine.

I swear… all I saw was a monkey. Tail and all.

Monkey assumptions

Now don’t look so smug, because sometimes you see monkeys where there are no monkeys… otherwise known as “making wrong assumptions.”

And just like imaginary monkeys, assumptions often lead to a misrepresentation of other people or situations.

Misunderstandings result. People get labeled. Friendships end. Expectations turn weird.

But, most of all, God sits in the back seat as He watches you sabotage a relationship assignment He’d set up for you.

Have you…

…ever stated something as fact, when it really wasn’t … or at least you hadn’t verified it? That’s an assumption.

…ever read someone’s mind and known they didn’t like you? That’s an assumption.

…drawn a conclusion about a situation based on how you interpreted the evidence and later found out there was more to the story? That’s an assumption.

All of us have.

  • This week, see how often you can catch yourself making an assumption. That’s a good first step.
  • Then, of course, revisit your thinking so it involves more grace and less assumption.
  • Choose to wait until you’ve gotten the facts of a situation or talked to person you might mislabel.
  • And when you finally do know something is a fact and not an assumption, handle it gently if it is a negative fact, and joyfully if it is a positive fact.

Let’s create a legacy that assumes the best in our relationships with people!

Here’s to less monkeying around and more gracious living,

Susan

 

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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Sarah Philpoo

    Oh Susan that is so funny! I do hope your friends had a good sense of humor. But yes, let’s assume the best.

  2. Andrea

    Assumptions can be traps that we all too willingly enter into. Gracious living is always a good choice. The monkey story is so funny, and I hope that your friend didn’t hold your compromised mental capacity against you. 🙂

    1. Susan Gaddis

      Ya know, Andrea, I think she did once she understood it was the morphine. I’m not sure her daughter ever recovered though. 🙂

  3. LeAnn

    Love you, I remember those days praying for your healing and watching God at work and being there to help with the house and the kids. God is good, all the time!
    long time friend, far away, but always close at heart!

    1. Susan Gaddis

      Miss you too, LeAnn. Especially laughing with you! Fun times held close to my heart.

      I get to see Cody every once in a while. He and James will stop by when they are hanging out.

      So thankful you are settled and happy in a new location with good things happening for you.

      Love you to the moon and back. 🙂

  4. Angela Allison

    Thank you for all you share Susan! That was very funny and true! Assumptions, wow, we all do this for sure. I can see anxiety coming through from assumptions, can you? When we’re not in someone’s presence, and really can only take their word on where they’re at or what they’re doing, assumptions “swing” that monkey! I PRAY constantly to smother mine. But still it lingers sometimes. Love you Susan!!

    1. Susan Gaddis

      Oh, yes, Angela, anxiety and assumptions go hand in hand for sure. Good point!

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