Working in the opposite spirit

So I am sitting here, and have been for a good 40 minutes or so, feeling sorry for myself and fuming over something that really should not cause me any more effect than a frustration that should burn out quickly, because I have no control over it.

So why am I so burned up?  My cheeks are still hot and my heart feels heavy and dejected. Why?  What button did this situation press to cause me to still be sitting here stewing in my own self pity?  And more importantly, what am I going to do about it?

The issue at hand really isn’t’ relevant.  How it makes me feel and what I choose to do about it, is.

It made me feel disempowered and unimportant.  Funny though that with all the understanding I have about how much I am loved and approved of, by both God and man, that something so simple could unravel my self-esteem so easily.

Lately I’ve been pondering that verse that says ‘may the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight O Lord’, (Psalm 19:14). Hmm, methinks an hour ago the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart did not reflect this prayer.

And so now that I am intentionally working at ‘working in the opposite spirit’ – choosing joy over melancholy – I have to face the fact that an hour ago I paced up and down like an angry tiger, giving air to some pretty colourful language and allowing a darkness to overtake my valuable time as well as the position of my heart.

A bit sobering you say?  Yep.  I believe in facing that which causes us to become ‘less than’ – that which brings out not the best in us, but the stuff that we really don’t want to admit is there. Yes it hurts, but a wound must always be cleaned and attended to lest it fester and infect the whole body.

In John 15:3, Jesus says ‘Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you’.  Because of salvation, we are already made clean, including all that is within us.  I know that in the sight of God, I am whole and holy.  But my choice of reaction today belies this fact.  So how do I come to terms with the reality of my actions and the knowledge that despite the truth of Jesus’ words, I still find myself falling into less than desirable mindsets and behaviour patterns?

I do all that I can to come to a place of repentance as quickly as possible.  I do not desire for my heart to be hardened or for my words to plant seeds of discontent, bitterness or self-pity in my mind.  I desire to live in a way that brings joy, hope, love and acceptance and I believe that it begins within.

So now, an hour and a half after my unsavoury outburst and probable overreaction to a frustrating but not impossible situation, I have a choice to make.  Let it go or let it grow.  Right now, at 10:45am, I feel very little difference in my mood, but as I choose to let it go, I know that at some point I will realise my mood has shifted, coming into alignment with my choices instead of my reactions.

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