September 16, 2010

Redirecting Anger

I am tired today. I slept well, but had weird dreams, and some not so nice thoughts. I went to bed angry, which is something the Scriptures say not to do, and I suffered as a result. I am angry with my husband, and I took my hurt out on my beloved son instead. I redirected my angry, rightfully meant for one person, but deposited upon another. This is something we should never do, but I admit that I do it often. I don't even mean to do it, it almost always happens on it's own. Typically, there is some trigger, some thing the one person has done that gets me going, and then "wham" just like a freight train, everything just comes out. It wasn't meant to be, but it happened, and now I have to deal with the consequences of my own actions.

As I sit here this morning, I am feeling incredibly downcast. I am upset, yes; but more than that, I am simply tired and irritated. I feel like I have been walking a very long time with a pebble in my shoe. I am carrying a heavy burden, and this darn rock is causing me great pain. It is rubbing me the wrong way, and there is no way I can get it out of my shoe. Even when I stop to look for it, I cannot find it; I just feel it as soon as I attempt to walk on. I am walking in faith, and this pebble (which at times feels like a massive boulder) is Satan's thorn to try and hurt me and cause me to stop moving forward. He doesn't want me to go anywhere in faith, no; he would much prefer that I sit down and look/hunt for the thing that is causing me the pain. By focusing on my pain, my sorrow, my hurt -- I will not so readily get up and start moving again. God is leading me forward, God is asking me to follow Him in faith. I must walk on, I must walk on -- but the pain is intense at times. How can I continue on?

The answer is really to have more faith, faith in God, faith in His promises, and faith in knowing that He is able and will do what He wills. It is not a matter of Him being able, for He is -- but rather, it is a matter of fact that He WILL do what He has promised. He will do what He has promised to us (all of His children), promised to me, and promised to you. God is Faithful, and we are called to follow Him in faith.

I look at the pebble in my shoe, and I know to whom it belongs. I see it, I know it well. It hurts me daily, and as much as I would like to empty my shoe out, I cannot not -- not yet. I cannot get the pebble out of my shoe because it is hidden, buried beneath the layers of fabric and the sole material. It is deeply situated, and the only way to get it out is to: change shoes or walk on barefoot. I either have to leave the shoes behind or wait for someone to give me a new pair to put on.

God has not given me new shoes (speaking metaphorically); so I must take these shoes off and follow after Him barefoot. This scares me because I am afraid of injuring myself, I am afraid that I will be hurt through the process. God is telling me not to be afraid, He is saying that He will protect me -- and I must believe His word to me -- that He is telling me the truth. I have to take off these old shoes and for the time being walk on without any protection on my feet. I am afraid to do so -- I do not like pain -- I do not like to suffer in this way.

What can I do? I can either walk on with the pain I know or walk on without pain and experience the potential of other pain (or perhaps not.) There is no absolute proof that if I walk on without any shoes that I will hurt again. Yes, there is empirical data -- my Mother always told us to put shoes on our feet whenever we went outside to play. She was being a good Mom, protecting us from harm. I know to do this as well, because I told my son the same thing. It is good advice, and advice worth heeding. Yet, my Savior is walking on and I must follow -- do I sit and wait until new shoes arrive? Or do I just go and trust that my Savior is not only able to protect me BUT that He can provide those new shoes to me at any point, at any time, and in any way He chooses? The answer of course is YES. My Savior God is more than able to provide new shoes to me, and He is more than able to keep me safe until He does so. I must trust Him to do both, I must believe that He not only can do this for me, but that He will do this for me.

Dear Lord,

I am being asked to walk on without the formerly comfortable protection of my old shoes. They need to be left behind, and I have no new shoes to put on my feet at this time. Therefore, I have to walk on without any shoes, and it scares me to do so. I don't mind going barefoot, but because I don't know the terrain ahead, I am afraid of what "might" be. I am trusting you today to provide to me safety and security, and I know that in time you will provide new shoes to me. My faith rests in You and You alone, and my trust sits securely and squarely upon your shoulders. You are able, you will do as you promise -- You are God alone.

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