Now I was mad. And I had every right to be, didn’t I?
I kept asking myself over and over “Why do I have to change? I wasn’t the one who screwed up?”
My annoyance was piqued and topping out on the high scale.
This whole “following and being led by Him” is hard when you don’t get to have it your way.
I found myself whining, griping and not liking my situation. not. one. little. bit!
God kept whispering, “Take it slow… stay calm.” When instead I wanted to scream, yell and let loose in loud acclamations, “What they’re asking is not fair! This is not fair!”
I had done my part—I had communicated—I had done the right thing.
Yet here I was with it all back in my lap for me to fix. I was being asked to serve it all up again by changing MY WAY!!
—At least that’s how I was seeing it.
Yet again He whispered, “Trust me.”
See this whole thing of following God down paths where the thorn bushes grab and we’re ducking down low is not fun.
I am finding myself having to give up what I want and trusting Him with the outcome. It’s the way of brokenness, following and trusting that He’s got this.
Again He whispered to me, “This is not the way you would choose but I am leading you this way. Will you follow?”
“Ugh…” is all I could muster.
My temper-tantrum self said, “Grrr…” It growled within me and I grumbled, “Why do I have to do this again?”
I was being asked to change when I had already followed the instruction book. I had already done my part so why should I have to change?
Sometimes we face obstacles which are not of our making. Boulders fall into the path that we thought we had cleared.
After fighting, struggling and tossing through the night I woke the next day with an idea for attempting a solution.
My first step was stating the facts and they were in my favor.
- I had done the right thing.
- I had communicated clearly
- I had done my part.
But I was discovering God wasn’t really interested in any of those facts or my so-called rights.
Instead He was concerned with my reactions. He was looking at my attitude and how I was going to follow Him through this situation. How was I going to lead without speaking ill of others? Who was in the wrong or the right wasn’t the point anymore. Instead the question was “How will my heart travel through this path?”
LIFE TRUTH – There will always be situations when we are not treated fairly. Life is not fair and I’m reminded of that often. Sometimes we are treated better than we deserve — that’s mercy. And at other times, imperfect people bump into us and knock us off course. — And sometimes we do the bumping into others.
During these times, our hearts and feelings can be hurt. We learn what we’re made of and how willing we are to allow His love to flow through us and not just to us.
So what can we do when we find ourselves in a situation where life’s not going to treat us fair?
- Take a step back – When we can step back mentally and physically away from the situation we give ourselves a chance to breathe and re-evaluate the situation.
- Ask God for wisdom, discernment and clear direction forward – In our faith walk, sometimes we leave this step for later. But I have found in going first to Him, He gives wisdom, and discernment for the next steps forward.
- Evaluate emotions and responses – Toby Mac posted a great quote and I snatched it up, “Don’t let your emotions be your primary decision maker.” When emotions are in the lead, we often make mistakes, think irrationally, and say things we wish, later, we could take back. When we lead with clear thoughts and not let our emotions rule the moment we make better choices.
- Talk it through with a trusted and honest confidant – This isn’t a dumping session but a time when we talk through the situation with someone. If we have chosen well, this person will listen and help us process well. (Which means they may not always tell us what we want to hear but will speak honest truth in love.)
- Take the next step forward – Now that we have a better grip on our situation we can take the next step with assurance and confidence that God is leading us in a good direction.
With every confrontation and situation that upsets our way of doing things we have to look for solutions.
The answers aren’t always clear-cut or easy solutions but they are growth opportunities. And that’s what I’m learning over and over —
Grow through and follow Him — even when it’s not my way.