Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Ruffle Me Feathers

     My panties are definitely bunched in a wad. I accidentally and carelessly backed my Lacrosse into someone's car parked in my driveway, and my husband’s silence unraveled my emotional securityDespite the minimal damage to both vehicles and no one being injured by the incident,the claim increased our insurance’s monthly premium by 20%.
    I understand the reason my husband lacked words for me. Unfortunately I'm prone to these types of incidents when I'm behind schedule or rushing through a task. I don't intend to damageproperty or even hurt the feelings of others when I'm in a hurry or preoccupied. 
    In fact, I beat myself up when I realize the consequences of my actions. It really irritates meeven more that I can't undo it either. I desperately wish when we took responsibility for our actions and sought restoration that it instantly made a permanent erasure of the entire occurrence.
    Since the elimination of my mishap was impossible, I thought about it all the way to work the following day. I found myself mostly wallowing in the sorrow over my husband's irritation with me. As I prayed through my disappointed feelings with his response, I discovered how easily I let others responses affect my mood. 
    Suddenly the Lord brought to mind Ephesians 2:10 (NASB), a verse I read that morning. “We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” As I cried out to the Lord with my frustrations, He popped aspecific application into my thoughtsIn that moment I realized the good work the Lord prepared beforehand” for me to learn was to not let others choices steal my joy and peace.
    I must admit. Despite how easily those words flow on to paper, their application to everyday living presented a challenge to me. Even as I meditated on the Lord's desire for my walk, I knew without a doubt that the task in front of me would be a moment-by-moment challenge of obedience. 
    The reality of life is that we all face days when we find ourselves bombarded withopportunities to respond to others who ignore us, speak rudely to us, or blame us for their poor attitudes and actions. Outwardly we may appear to have responded correctly to them, but inside we may be seething. It requires every ounce of self-control to muster up a desperate prayer to the Lord, seal our lips, and avoid blurting out our real thoughts or reactions.
    However, we experience tremendous freedom as we trust the Lord to enable us to remain obedient in our thoughts. We also discover how uncomplicated our lives become for us, when we learn to eat humble pie and fight the battles in our heads in silence. It’s easier to face the Lord with our sinful thoughts than working out issues with others injured by our hurtful words and actions.
    As I reflected on my husband’s response, the Lord showed me that sometimes the “good work prepared” for me is acceptance of the gift of silence. My husband understood the way I personally beat myself up for my carelessness and didn’t wish to add to my pain with hurtful words. In those moments on my drive to work, I chose to receive my husband’s gift with joy and peace.