Have you ever felt like someone punched you in the gut with their words? What about a slap across the face through inference? It is so hard to keep the right attitude and do what is right in response to unfair treatment. I’ve walked this road before; I’ve been treated unkindly many times in my life. But this one threw me for a loop. I felt devastated, and filleted.
Well now, there it is, isn’t it? I FELT. Here we go again, God. I’m letting my feelings get the better of me once again. My reactions are barely contained as I struggle with these overwhelming and overachieving emotions. Help me to remember what is true. I can’t trust my feelings. I trust facts first, then follow those with faith, and then allow my feelings to come into the picture. I’ve had this all backwards today.
Why does it hurt so much when someone offends with their words or actions? I’m a trusting person, and that vulnerability has gotten stepped on more times than I can count. But I’ve gotten thicker skin through the years and circumstances. I’ve built up a layer of… well, evidentially not. So I remind myself of the truth once again.
I can analyze what happened to me and look at the facts. Maybe there is some truth to be taken from this situation; maybe not. If so, I’ll take what I can away from this experience as constructive criticism and work on it. Maybe I’ll even allow God to use it for my good instead of wallowing in the pain of walking through it. This sure is hard.
Next I’ll remind myself of the truth in the Word. I can take my pain and bring it to Jesus (Luke 12:28). I can give my anxiety to Him, because He cares about me. (1 Peter 5:7) I can tell God how unfair I feel I’ve been treated, and then forgive the person who hurt me before it begins to allow bitterness into my heart (Luke 17:4, Hebrews 12:15). I can learn from this and allow God to use it for my benefit, some way, somehow (Romans 8:28).
And I deal with my emotion. I don’t like this at all! This is not a fun thing to walk through. But it’s truly not the end of the world, and I can choose to give this to Jesus and let it run off of me. I remember when a friend told me a long time ago about rain water running off of a duck’s back, and how they would drown without the oil in their feathers. She told me to let the things I’d heard roll right off of me, “like water off a duck’s back,” with God’s help. Ahhhh, okay. This is working.
I will not allow the enemy of my soul to use this to his advantage in my life. I know his tricks! He loves to use hurt and bitterness to divide and conquer. He loves to steal my joy and kill my hope. He loves to bring defeat into my vocabulary and my attitude. And I won’t stand for it. In Jesus’ name, I choose to bring this current pain (and any past pain of which this reminds me) to Papa and ask Him to help me deal with it in a correct way. Help it to rub off some more of my rough edges (how can there be so many after all this time?) and allow God to somehow use this in my life to His glory.
And I remember that growth comes through pain. Lord, help me not to waste my pain…