Crosshatching is a technique whereby an artist (using pencil) criss-crosses lines in varying densities so as to render a work shaded to whatever degree necessary to achieve desired realism.
Each person who comes into our life, leaves a line and shades over us. Their influence is making us into something. But what? Are we becoming more real? Do the friends we choose add depth to our outlook? I believe that while we may be receiving surface definition from those in our lives, the actual image we're being transformed into necessarily comes from God alone. This is why this verse is so important. At any and every stage of our development, it's vital that we keep it at the forefront of our outlook. Like the reference we're working from when creating a work of art and making it our own. Unlike writing, it's not considered plagiarism when you copy a work of (visual) art, provided you pay homage to the original artist. But then publication of the copied piece is another matter altogether.
So, "This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you." (John 15:12)
Sometimes the lines drawn over us are so many that it ends up blacking out any trace of definition or detail. So much goes into the making of us as fully-formed individuals that our lives become so overshadowed that we can't see clearly. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. Psalm 121 (verse 5) says "The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand." Darkness isn't always negative. It could be simply the darkness of not knowing. Not understanding. There are ways in which God has destined us to walk that we haven't yet grown into. And there's nothing wrong with that. We're being rendered into a fully formed work of art. One that is beautiful where it counts: with reference to God. And remaining in His shadow is where we find the image from which we actualize in light of everyone else. It takes time, but the greatest works always do. It takes time to stand the test of time.
"He (and she) that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty." (Psalm 91:1)
See, looking at God is the only way that we become anything. I know of no other way to put that without sugarcoating it. And I'm loath to do that. When all we do is look outward—at things, at objects, at images without—without looking at God as revealed by Jesus, then our humanity will be stunted and the references and inferences we draw that we subconsciously add to our lives will not make us into who we're meant to be. I'm speaking to the person who believes in God and the veracity of the Bible. All of this might sound like so much bunk to the pragmatic non-believer but consider this: without God, your life is based upon that which you perceive and whereas perception is ethereal and evanescent, changing with whims and times, God is always there. Always the same. Always a reference point from which to limn, to shade and to render a life as is. This cannot be done by human beings only.
"Then said he unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen what the ancients of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his imagery? for they say, The Lord seeth us not; the Lord hath forsaken the earth." (Ezekiel 8:12)
There's the darkness of unbelief that is without God. Where everyone seeks to actualize based upon others' opinions and perceptions. And then there's the darkness of shade from God's hand, underneath which He is fashioning us into who He wants us to be.
"Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it." (Psalm 139:5-6)
The love we receive--and allow ourselves to receive--will in turn make us into the fullest expressions of ourselves for others. If you want to love others, you must know how God loves you. Look to Him. That's all that He shows.
"Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins." (1 John 4:10)