Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Don't Stew

I didn't know what else to call this post.   It isn't related to meat.   It is about stewing over past hurts and disappointments.   I read recently, and wish I could remember where, an article about how to avoid letting hurtful words get inside you and fester.   I don't know why the article seemed fresh to me.    I have heard this sort of message plenty of times in conversation, sermons, advice given, but it struck me differently this time around.    The article was completely a reminder to discipline yourself not to give recognition to hurts by repeating them to yourself or to others.  

Examples of this came to mind.   I don't think I go anywhere without hearing women grousing about something.   Famous grousing is over little bitter comments of what their mother-in-law said or mother or neighbor or friend did......at their wedding, while they were expecting their first or second child, at church.    The example helped me ponder what would happen if we could just keep our mouths shut over these little hurts and injustices.   What if.   Well, I think the hurt and injustice would not become cemented in our brains so hard.  We might get along with those people more.   Repeating it just makes it fresh and hurtful all over again and of course we hurt the person who hurt us to begin with.   Why do this?

I think we tell these stories because it is fun and gives us attention and makes us feel better about ourselves.   That is not MY fresh observation (thanks Pastor).   (Thanks Jesus).   Shutting down our urge to grouse is a hard discipline but a worthwhile effort.   It isn't our effort but the work of the Holy Spirit.  

Explaining this further is hard for me to put into words.    Looking backwards, I can think of the many brides who spent years griping about what went wrong at their wedding.   What if..........they just overlooked what happened, if I overlooked what happened that was actually not that big a deal in the great scheme of life, and instead loved our neighbor by forgiving them and shutting up about it.   The hurt would leave the crevices of our mind and maybe we wouldn't have as much fun talking about our neighbor who hurt us.   Would that be so horrible?   50 plus years of grousing can be repeated and to what profit is THAT????   What if someone hurts us this week????   What if we just kept it to ourselves?   What if we didn't confront the person who hurt us (already screwed up with that thought today), then what?   Well, I am not going to try to answer that question but I do know this concept will always be a struggle for us sinners.   Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord that our sin is forgiven.   Thanks be to God that the Holy Spirit gives me a good shake every so often.   Thanks.   I needed that.  

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