Sometimes we need to focus inward to realize we need to look upward! Reflecting on how you treat others is a form of propelling you spiritually forward EL
“You’re so uptight”; “You need to loosen up! “People are afraid to come to you because you always seem so stressed.” “You’re always so busy”! These are the comments I have heard consistently over the last two weeks. I think He’s trying to tell me something and using several people to bring the message!
Welcome to Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Wednesday’s Word with Trench Classes United.
Have you ever received honest criticism from more than one person but about the same thing? If so what do you do? I know for me, the first time I heard it, my tendency was to defend myself, but after the third and fourth time, I took a step back and realized maybe there was something to learn from in all of this. I began to banter back and forth with God in the days that followed the last critique. This is what I read one morning as I was pondering this dilemma of loosening up without letting go of my convictions: Psalm 106:3: “Blessed are those who keep justice; and he who does righteousness at all times!”
Uh, how in the world is that supposed to help me my soul cried out. At all times means all the time; sounds pretty rigid to me and yet, our God is not rigid, I argued with myself. If people see me as rigid, then they may see my God as rigid. Ugh, I could just groan without ceasing because of the picture that began forming. In many instances, I was handling situations like a bull in a china cabinet! Isn’t that a scary but funny picture? I must admit, my first glance at this picture didn’t make me laugh.
I realize I may sound a bit crazy having this conversation with myself, but that’s why I’m writing from my heart to yours, Coffee Hour Friend, because if you don’t understand the depth of the dilemma then you won’t appreciate the victory I’m beginning to experience.
Over the last few weeks, our organization has gone through something pretty difficult, something that would destroy most organizations, but we have come out of it more determined than ever, and stronger in number. But – this is a big but – unconsciously it has buried my joy and my love for laughter. It was as if, for a short time, I had the weight of the world in my heart and it pushed all the joy out of sight.
How did I get my joy back? God used others to speak into my life and He does the same for you. They may not always be people we trust for whatever reason; and that may be why we don’t hear the message at first, but if we quiet our souls, and seek Him with our whole heart, we can hear the message He’s trying to convey.
Hearing these things from others did help to snap me out of myself and make me realize that I needed to focus upward instead of inward and yet, I needed to focus inward to realize how desperately I needed to look upward. In other words, taking time to reflect on how you may be coming across to others can be spiritually healthy. How else do we learn and move forward.
Learning and unlearning