Let’s have a down to earth conversation for a moment. Most everything I’ve written about has had a positive thought process behind it. However, I’d like to take a moment and just be personal with a couple things. First, I will echo something I’ve touched on before. Life isn’t always going to be perfect. There will be ups, and there will be downs. It’s how we react to those ups and downs that define our character.
Something happened yesterday afternoon that really bothered me. A decision was made, and a situation brought to light that was/is completely out of my hands. Even still, I walked away very disappointed. I had several thoughts about being heard – about my opinion and/or thoughts being taken into consideration in the equation. I felt as if what I had to say didn’t really matter, and ultimately wasn’t important. With tears in my eyes, I made it clear how I felt, and that I was upset. I am not great at making my thoughts known, much less fighting for them. When something doesn’t go my way, I tend to just let it slide and go on about life. This time, I chose to be honest, and just explain how the situation made me feel. Ultimately, it still didn’t matter, but I know I did what I could.
Having said all that – let’s put this in a practical example to draw a parallel to a situation in life and how people react to disappointment. Let’s say you are a member of a church, and something happens with another member, or a message is taught that you do not agree with. You have three choices. 1) You walk away and decide to leave the church, 2) You decide to stay, but remain unhappy about the situation, or 3) You make a conscious decision to forgive those responsible. How would you respond? As I sit here pondering this hypothetical situation, I realize it would somewhat depend on what the “crime” in question is. In thinking, if I’m being honest, I think I’d be somewhere between 2 and 3 at first.
The point I’d like to explore is this. I was talking to a friend about a similar situation that happened in her organization. She chose to stay, but lost a friend when they got offended and chose to leave. I can’t tell you how much this happens in places all around us. Take the church situation, for example. Many people would not hesitate to leave a church, knowing they can find a new one “just as good” as where they are leaving. I challenge this, though. If you are in a place that you know God has led you to be a part of, leaving over a disagreement would be foolish – plain and simple.
Think of it this way. Assuming you live in the United States (if not, here’s a shout out to all my non-US friends!!) there is likely something you disagree with from our government. Maybe you don’t agree with our President, or another person in leadership. Would you decide that it’s just too offensive, and pack your bags – moving to the next best country…and when this happens again, your human nature insists you pick up and move again, and again. Do you see a pattern here?
I realize it may be a silly analogy to some, but is it really? Think about it. In this “all about me” consumer driven society we live in, it’s far to easy to give up and move on when things don’t go as planned. I say all that to say this – figure out the things in life that are important to you. Stand by them, and stand behind them. Don’t, however, give up on them at the hint of trouble. Be willing to look at things from all sides, and just remain flexible.