Drowning in a World of Irritability
His answer came quickly. The meditation in one of my devotions, Living Faith, yeilded one possibility. Rather than direct all of my worries and concerns toward how others will perceive my actions, or me for that matter, I need to ask only one question before I make a decison or take action. Will it please God? If the answer is yes, then I can proceede with confidence. If not, then I had better take a second look at what I am about to do, and my motiviations for doing it.
Of course, if I choose correctly, and my decison is met with critisim, jelousy or any other negative reaction, it won't be pleasant, but I must remember, when the dust of this world finally settles, it isn't the opinion of my boss, my co-worker, or even my family that is going to matter. It is God's opinion that will decide my fate - for eternity. So, who should I be pleasing?
Seems so simple doesn't it? Yet we all know what it is like to stand alone against popular opinion. It can have ugly outcomes. The Bible is full of stories illustrating that fact. So is history. I may not be asked to be a martyr, facing death, but I may face disproval and anger over and over again. After a time this tends to wear down even the strong hearted.
I think of Daniel in the courts of Babylon. He chose God over kings. He did not worry over their opinion, nor was he overly concerned about saving his own life. The only thing that mattered to him was pleasing God. And what happened? God supplied all of his needs, even shutting the mouths of the lions and feeding him while he was in the lions' den.Won't He do the same for me, if I put Him first?
And then there are the words of St. Paul. The time of my departure is at hand. I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:6-7
My race will eventually end as well and I've decided I want St. Paul's eloquent words to be mine. If my heart is in the right place, then so will be my actions.
Armed with this resolve, I got in the car and did my usual race to work. No one honked at me. No one cut me off. In fact, traffic was so light I made it to work five minutes earlier than usual. My boss and co-workers were cheerful, the day flew by without any stress or anxiety. Was it just one of those good days, or did my attitude and perception have anything to do with it?
I plan a re-play on Monday, and I'll let you know.
Thank you, Lord for being my Good Father, caring enough to offer me guidance and instruction, along with all your blessings. With you by my side, I can handle anything.