Saturday, December 12, 2009
"And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another...... the love of many will grow cold." Matthew 24:10,12
Probably every week (every day?) most of us are given opportunities to become offended.
Last week I had a memorable opportunity.
See, our local phone company replaced some phone wires on our street and they forgot to hook our neighbors' phone back up. The following day 'Linda' walked over here to ask if we still had phone service, and if so, could she call the phone company.
Now, often this neighbor had visited with us out in our yard, but she'd never before stepped inside our house. The three of us spoke in our kitchen for awhile, mostly about our Magic Jack phone which, fortunately, decided to work much, much better three months ago, right before I was about to throw it out the window. heh.
So after she made her phone call in our dining room (while I straightened the kitchen a bit), she asked for more details about Magic Jack and our super-cheap tv cable, taking notes, even. She was here probably a half-hour, we told her to come again if the phone company didn't show up the following day, and then she left.
Now, why should I be tempted to become offended about any of that? Well, in all that time, she said not one word about our house. You know, this place where I've, at times, poured out my soul up on a ladder, painting walls. This place where I've rearranged furniture, hung wallpaper and curtains, and tried to make everything golden and warm and comfortable.
She said nothing about any of that. Not a word.
But you know? I just told that snarky temptation to become offended/sad/insecure/discouraged to take a hike. And instead, I asked God to always (always!) nudge me, (even tip me over if He must), to say something nice about peoples' homes, no matter why I happen to be there. I do usually try to pick out things I like and comment about them, but now, oh my, may God help me to become more passionate about letting people know the work they've done on their homes is noticed, appreciated and valued.
Myself, I believe that's a much better way to use the energy it would have required to remain all offended and bummed-out. Always, there's more value in learning from others what not to do, rather than sitting around in a huff, resenting their mistakes. Always.