I hate it but there is nothing I can do to correct it. If I make sure that everyone involved truly knows my character, then I am making a bigger deal of something than I should and would cause irreparable damage to others. If I let it go, then I have people believing something untrue about me. This is one of those dilemmas that will keep me up at night (and if I’m going to lose sleep, shouldn’t I at least be greeted by a shiny, clean house in the morning?!) But no, I am greeted by a mirror that I look into and think “No…no, that can’t be right.” So I rub my eyes and try again…not any better.
Misconceptions. How do you handle them? The thing about me…the thing I would change if I could…I really do care what other people think…not in a shallow way, but I feel what other people are feeling and truth is really important to me…which in and of itself isn’t a problem, but it leads to the dilemma above. Knowing something is being perceived or interpreted incorrectly is physically painful for me. And letting it go…well…I can only do that if God is helping me because I just…can’t..handle it!
I have an area in my life where I am dealing with this right now….well, two areas…but one is big and has been going on for a long time and the other is smaller and will be temporary…I think. Anyway, the painful conclusion that I have come to is that sometimes, we have to suck it up and be perceived incorrectly and let truth come out gently over time through our actions because our words won’t/can’t be heard right now. This was really bothering me when I woke up this morning. With one of these scenarios, I am the victim (which I hate admitting) but in order to do right by the people who have mistreated me, I have to take the label of the “designated a–hole” and just sit there in it…set up camp in the middle of all of the discomfort…in all of the falseness…rest in the mess…and prepare to stay a while with my mouth firmly closed…and it sucks.
On my own, there is no way that I could do this…but in obedience to God, it’s amazing how it becomes manageable (not easy…hear me on this!) despite it being completely contrary to my wiring. Actually, that is how I know it’s of God…being empowered to do something that I simply can not do if left to my own devices. And that…that right there…that is what encourages me and gets me back where I need to be…it gets me away from the pity party and strengthens me. The knowledge that I am being obedient despite what I want to do…that fills me with satisfaction and contentment that could never be produced even if everything I wanted known was revealed to the entire world.
I know this was a bit vague, but what about you? Have you ever felt this way? Have you ever been writhing inside because you have something to say but, for one reason or another, you must be muted? Have you ever taken a personal hit for the “greater good?” Have you ever had to watch something play out in order to not rob others of what God is trying to do in their hearts? I think that in the end, it will unfold beautifully but in the interim, it really does suck.
My prayer today is that we will have the goal in mind…the big picture…as we interact with people. I’m praying that we will be strong enough to make the painful investment that is sometimes required for a bigger payoff later…the investment of having silent strength…subtle strength. I’m praying that as we struggle through all of our dilemmas, that we will huddle up close to our loving God who wants his best for us all and who is the author of all things good. I’m praying that through our sacrifices, more will come to love the God who sustains us. Much love friends.