Words are windows. They are windows on the soul. Sometimes the windows are clean and the view inside is crystal clear.  When words are used to express a truthful insight into the speaker’s heart, they can help us know each other more intimately.

But, sometimes the word-windows are fogged over. Sometimes the window is smudged and the what we see is distorted. Sometimes the words we use are designed to obscure a clear picture of what is really going on inside. Other times the windows are covered with shades to cloak the fear or dampen the desire.

I am satisfied that both kinds of window-words are important to help us navigate life. If we are communicating with someone we trust will treat what they see with respect, we will be inclined to use words that reveal as much of who we are as we or they can tolerate. We want to be known by people who will hear us with mercy, not judge us with malice. These grace filled relationships are sacred gifts to a lonely soul.

But, there are other situations where we find ourselves uncertain about how others will treat what they discover about us. When we are in these kinds of relationships, we will be hesitant to allow them to see too much. We will pull the shades on the window of our souls to protect our hearts from the glare of critical eyes.

So, be careful how you receive what you see through the windows others open to you. Listen with an ear that hears the tremor or delight in the voice. Notice with your eyes seeing the tears rimming the eye—tears of tenderness or tears of terror. Be interested, not critical of what you hear. Know that the soul of another is not yours to trample, but is a gift for you to receive that will help ease the loneliness in both of you.