I wrote this post last March, but I didn’t publish it, because I am afraid what I have to say might be misunderstood, misinterpreted, sound harsh, or worst of all, judgmental, or like I am pointing a finger at someone. None of these things are my intent…so here goes:
I deal with my bad attitude at least once a day. Actually, it would be more honest to say 10 times a day…or more, because it’s a fact of life that situations don’t always turn out to my liking, and for some reason people and things don’t always do what I think they should do—like "Why are cars racing on the street below my bedroom window at 4 a.m. when I am trying to sleep?"
What I have discovered is that the more I focus on the negative aspects (that is, according to my assessment) of a person or situation, the worse I feel. That negative thought in my brain heaps hot coals on a smoldering fire of frustration lodged my heart. I’ve come to the sobering conclusion that my negative thoughts have more power than I ever imagined, but there’s good news. My positive thoughts, thoughts for good and not evil, also have more power than I can imagine.
There is a verse in the book of Romans that says, "Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse." (Rom. 12:14). It is easy to think of this verse as referring to people in China or Pakistan who are going through religious persecution today or the early Christians that we read about in the New Testament or a saint like Corrie ten Boon who prayed for her prison guards. Surely, it couldn’t mean I am suppose to bless my jealous co-worker or Uncle Charlie who blamed me for something I didn’t do or the clerk at the store who was rude to me or my neighbor who keeps his radio blaring until 2 a.m.?
Happily, this verse doesn’t give us any wiggle room. There is no curve between blessing and curse. We either do one or the other in our hearts. I’ve never been able to stop negative thoughts from coming into my head, but I have learned that I have a choice when they show up. One way of getting out of that “negative space” is to bless the person or situation troubling me. I say “happily” because, when we are whole heartedly willing to become vessels of blessing, it frees God to work on peoples’ hearts (including mine). If He chooses, He may turn situations around, but that is not the goal. The goal is to release the person or situation to Him so that He receives the glory.
What would happen if couples seeking divorce decided to bless instead of curse one another? What would happen if Democrats and Republicans blessed each other? What would happen if nations blessed each other?
Thanks for tuning in…and be blessed!
“Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name!” (Ps. 103:1).