“And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.”- Colossians 3:14
Ahh, to wear love is so easy when you have those peaceful feel-good feelings. When things are going good, all the bills are paid, no conflicts to manage, when life is rosy and the sun is shining. But the trick to peaceful living is to starve the negative emotions and reactions. How do we respond in a thoughtful, Christ-centered way? I am no where near an expert on this (in fact, I needed help at least three different times today alone!) but here are some tips that actually helped me today…
Validate emotions without twisting reality by owning our feelings and affirming with three words, “I am responsible.” This pierces the illusion of blame. I am responsible for what I do about any situation I find myself in. This doesn’t mean another party didn’t contribute to the problem. It means, I control whether or not I feel disappointed when someone doesn’t follow through on something. And why would I want to feel disappointed?
Tune into the Big Picture. Step back and remind myself what is truly important. Usually I can remember that life is not about me. But, I’m human. I tend to forget and then I need a trusted friend or respected collegue to bring reality back. I ask if this negative state I’m is moving me in the right direction or move me in a different direction? A change in perspective usually helps a change of heart.
When we give up the need to be right, we expand our options and thus the ability to see we are only a small part of the whole. Ego does not want this to happen. This is why it is so important to remain humble and know our identity in Christ-not the integrity of someone else.
Progress. Not Perfection.