“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1)
One of the blessings of my current challenged life is that I have more time to read & to write. My current “passion” is reading the works of authors like Jane Austen & Charlotte Bronte. I ran across a book with the complete works of the Bronte sisters & started to read one by Anne Bronte called “Agnes Grey.”
God often finds unique ways of speaking to me, & this time he chose a book from the mid 1800’s. While the main character, a governess, is visiting a “commoner” in the village near her home, the woman makes this statement regarding the above verse.
“It isn’t only in them you speak to, but in yourself.”
I stop & think – how many times do I put myself down, angry for what I cannot do?
How many times do I look at the housework left undone, the hobbies I once loved untouched, & berate myself for not being “better”?
Unfortunately, the answer is quite often. I get angrier at myself than at anyone else, & that anger can spill over onto others.
I’ve decided to try an experiment. Just as I seek to give a “gentle answer” to others, I am going to give gentle answers to myself, rather than stir up all the emotions that lead to dissatisfaction in my life & in my world.
God knows where I am – & why I am here. I may not like where I am, but with God’s help, I will be the very best “me” that I can be right here & right now.
No more being my own worst enemy, rather I will choose to befriend myself & be as kind to myself as I am to others.
Are there ways you can be kinder to yourself today? Don’t feel “selfish”! Do it because Jesus says so.
Prayer: Lord, You called us to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. Help us to find ways to be kind & loving to both ourselves & to others as we struggle through our daily challenges. Amen.
About the Author:
deni believes that the only true way to deal with chronic pain & chronic illness is to bring them to the feet of her Lord & Savior. Her multiple illnesses (Celiac Sprue, Atrial Fibrillation, Ankylosing Spondylitis, to name a few) have taught her many things about herself & her Christian walk. It is her fondest prayer that some of her lessons might be helpful to others as they walk the path of chronic illness. deni can be reached at EncouragingWords@me.com. Her website is http://www.pathwaysforchange.com/Encouragement.