A few frustrated words I spoke on Friday have snowballed and turned into a battlefield. I'm trying to keep the battle in my mind and not let it spill out on other people around me. All Friday and Saturday, almost every minute, frustration would hit me again and again. If I let it, it would take me down dark paths of anger and vengefulness. "If ____ does this, then I'll do that. I can't put up with this anymore." Two possible paths lie before me: one looks exhausting and frustrating, the other looks laden with guilt and regret. When I'm not fretting with anger, I'm fretting with fear.
Then I would realize I didn't want to go down those dark paths, not even in my mind. Come on, Lord, rescue me from this anger and fear. Help me take my thoughts captive to obedience in Christ. Help me pray about this situation instead of fretting over it. "Pray hardest when it is hardest to pray." This saying is so true!!!
Even when I would pick up a really good book to read to distract myself, little pieces of frustration would still pop up like weeds between the words I was reading. I would find myself arguing (with myself) about all the reasons why I was right, why I had to Do something to CONTROL the situation before I ended up even more miserable.
Then this saying by Abraham Lincoln reminded me that MY definition of "right" is not what matters. It's doesn't help to keep thinking of reasons to justify your side of the argument. I need to put God first, for He knows much more than I, He can see the big picture that I can't see in my own narrow sight.
This is exactly what happened: I lost patience with someone, which resulted in angry words, followed by her angry reaction and then refusal to talk anymore, resulting in more hurt and anger on my side.
Remembering how patient God has been with me through my stubborn times put it back into perspective.
"In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them, anyway."
I found these images on Pinterest this morning, and never was there a more timely discovery. I have no doubt that God put them there for me to find. Reading them was like having a sudden cool rain fall in the midst of a burning desert.
So I know there is still a long battle ahead of me. This problem isn't going to just go away (unless I am completely awful and drive someone far enough away I don't have to deal with it directly but I'll still have to deal with guilt and long-term repercussions). But with many battles we face - hurt feelings, meanness, unfairness at work or other situations, etc - how much relief it would be if we just stood still and let God take over and fight for us?? So often I don't do this because I can't see God fighting for me. I live by sight instead of by faith.
2 Corinthians 5:7 We live by faith, not by sight.