Generally speaking, I do not stress out. If I do stress, it’s over inconsequential things, or stuff that hasn’t happened yet…I’m a pretty imaginative individual. Lately, I’ve allowed stress to invade me. It has literally screwed with me mentally, physically and spiritually. I have basically allowed the actions of others – one person in particular, to dictate my state of being – to affect my health – to determine the places that I go. I have been appalled at this individual’s actions directed toward me and the people that I love. I have lost sleep over untruths, over chauvinistic behavior, over my own built up anger…In short, I’ve given someone else…someone that I don’t even respect, power over me.
A particular truth has been bouncing around in my mind for about a year now. I say it to my friends when they are dealing with unreasonable or hateful individuals in hopes that it will help them to move forward without bitterness…”Don’t expect other people to do or say or react the way that you would.” It’s like this for me …When I find out you’re a liar – not that you fibbed once and got caught – but that you lie on a regular basis for no good reason and never own up to it… I shouldn’t be surprised when the lies just keep coming, right? But somehow I’m surprised EVERY time. Every additional lie builds an additional layer of bitterness in me.
I am struck with the realization that I have focused so much of my energy on being appalled by someone else’s actions that I have failed to focus on what really matters. I’ve somehow taken an alternative route and it has taken me TWICE as long to get back on the interstate leading me to my destination. I’ve been sidetracked. I’m so concerned with why someone didn’t do something the way that I would have done it, that I’m actually not doing anything! You know what? I am done with that. Ain’t nobody got time for that! “Why did he say that?”… ” I can’t believe she said that to her!”…”If it were me, I would never have done that.” It’s time that I stop asking these questions and start asking, “Why am I saying this?”…”Why did I do that?”…”Why am I thinking these things?” It’s time that I ask God to help me deal with my own issues and stop worrying about everybody else’s. I am responsible for my own actions – and that includes how I react to the actions of others, good or bad.
I pray that if y’all have anyone that you need to forgive in your past or right now, that you will decide to do it . Everyday, just give it to the Lord – Ask Him to help you do it. Persevere. Forgiveness doesn’t happen overnight – It’s a process. But it’s worth it. It’s vital that we do it – for our mental, physical and spiritual well-being.