To recycle means to
It may be wonderful to turn a glass jar, popcorn tin, or sturdy box into something beautiful and useful – because of its original form or nature. However, it is an exercise in futility to lavishly adorn a person, and expect behavior based upon that adornment. We’ve all heard the terms, “you can’t turn a hoe into a housewife”, and “a pig wearing lipstick is still a pig”. While those sentiments may sound crass, they are none-the-less true.
When a person has shown themselves to be a liar, a physical, mental, or sexual abuser, a thief, unethical, amoral, or unworthy of trust, “recycling” them will not suffice as an argument for continued interaction, or a trusting relationship with them. Adding degrees, wealth, or status and fame to one’s life, does not change the core – the essential nature of that person. We are often shocked and disappointed when we hear of a pastor or church leader who has had sex with congregation members. We are appalled by the celebrity who uses or sells illicit drugs, lies on tax returns, or defrauds others.
Until a person has a renewing of the mind, then it doesn’t matter what type of priestly robes they wear, or how expensive their clothing is, they’ll still act ugly – they’ll just look good do so. If I give you a beautifully decorated container, but have not thoroughly cleaned the inside, sooner or later you will begin to detect evidence of what was housed in that container. You’ll soon smell the popcorn, vinegar, garbage, or whatever, coming through. In the same way, it matters not how big of a pulpit or platform one stands upon, nor how spectacular the outward garb, the true core remains, and will reveal itself.
I would rather have a beverage from a cup that is dirty on the outside, but clean on the inside, than one that appears to be clean on the exterior, and is beautiful to look at, but has grime and toxins (even if invisible) on the inside. The outside is not what defiles (contaminates), but rather a dirty inside.
We should, in order to help our planet, recycle (reuse with minimal alteration; adapt for new use without changing the nature) materials, trash, and waste. At the same time, we should be aware of “recycled” people – be cautious about people who are really ravenous wolves, dressed as cuddly sheep.
The intention here is not to encourage a cynical view of others. Rather, to encourage wisdom and perception when dealing with others – especially if the have shown themselves to be disingenuous. Always, as much as possible, live agreeably with others, just be wise, aware that actions speak louder than words – and appearances.