do you trust Me?
God has this cool way of putting me, us, in situations beyond ourselves. Yeesh!!!!! You know, I have realized in the past two years, more so in the past six months, more so in the past month, more so in the past five days??? :) Oh my gosh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How many times do I have to learn about my own heart? Arghhhhh!!! as I like to say (just started saying this in the past few months. Really!) Yikes Batman!
What is happening? I’ve seen a lot rhetoric locally, nationally, globally about our, (America’s) past year through this moment. There are some things I’ve said, thought, cried over, joked about, wept incessantly over, experienced frustration, laughed till I cried over, felt fear, not sure about anger, but I believe it was there aimed at the people closest to me when they weren’t what I was angry about. Hmmmmmmm. And through it all I’ve learned a lot about myself. There’s more work to do, on me.
I keep saying to myself, my family, my friends, when things go awry in our world, no matter what it is, a police officer getting shot, a child with a disease, a war torn nation, the homeless here and abroad, the addicted, the abused, the abuser, the loner, the alone one, the hurting, the angry, the good guys and the bad guys, the liars and the honest ones, the fighting — political, street gangs, social media, etc. I keep saying we have to do something. Something, anything. We have to make a difference in our world. It’s our world man. Don’t you get it? This is important. Don’t you get the urgency of the moment? People are suffering — accusing each other, belittling each other, hating each other, dismissing each other, not seeing each other, abusing each other, crippling each others spirits, breaking each others hearts, destroying the fabric and essence of who we are.
Just to prove a point — or make my side, my views right, better, stronger, more powerful than yours. Oh boy right? And then something happens, I respond to it with my holier than thou attitude. God — Father, when will I learn? When Will I Learn?
It’s what’s in my own heart. Oh my gosh, blahhhhhhhhhhh. You know there’s this verse in the bible — “The heart is deceitful above all things,
and desperately sick; who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9 (English Standard Version, courtesy biblegateway.com). Seriously? Does God have to be right about everything? :) Yeeesh. I guess the answer is yes. Hmmmmmm. My heart is deceitful. I just realized today, I have become one of “those” people (whoever “they” are). I was quick to judge — you know, the ole reliable knee jerk reaction. Woo hoo!!! I’ve been there before throughout my lifetime. Over and over again. I kind of thought I learned that lesson a while ago (years ago). But apparently not.
Now here I am on Twitter, on medium.com — cool right? On Twitter and here, I’ve recommended, highlighted, retweeted, tweeted things — then within seconds, sometimes minutes, sometimes overnight — I realize — I don’t want to put “that” out there. And I delete it, untweet it, unrecommend it, unhighlight it. It’s a good thing I don’t have thousands or millions of followers. WoW. Just think about it for a moment. When I have a knee jerk reaction — oh, sorry, here’s the definition of knee jerk, (courtesy of http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/english/knee-jerk) I like the British version —a quick reaction that does not allow you time to consider something carefully.
When I have a knee jerk reaction — A quick reaction that does not allow you time to consider something carefully — I do not consider the thing, event, words, people, situation, worldviews, context, facts, carefully. I respond without any type of analytical thinking or assessment of what I just saw, heard, read, etc. What does this say about me? About my heart? About who I am if I’m just using a knee jerk response to my world? I kind of think it means, I don’t really care enough about myself or my fellow man, woman, child to think through what’s going on. And I’m not talking about emergency situations or situations where you do get something in your spirit, your gut that says something’s wrong or not safe. That is different.
I’m talking about taking whatever mood I happen to be in, whether or not my blood sugar is low, whether or not I’ve had enough sleep, food to eat, taken the time to exercise, assessed my own mental state, where my heart is, how I’m feeling about myself, my life, if my family’s okay, my finances, my neighbor’s (are they okay?). The list can go on and on. When I respond to things without thinking them through and assessing my response, chances are I’m going hurt someone or a situation. And every time I’m going to hurt myself. Because normally my knee jerk reaction is me standing there with the stones in my hand, ready, more than ready, almost, if not, eager to throw them.
“Oh wretched man that I am.” Hmmmmmmmmmm… These past couple of years, I’m growing, still growing, in ways, I never realized I need(ed) to grow in. That, my good friends, is grace.