Monday, February 7, 2011

Bitterness - Bringin' It Home Baby

I came down with a nasty headcold and sore throat this week. It's slowed my run to a crawl, and fogged up my thinking. I haven't been as productive as I've wanted, spending many hours curled up in bed fighting chills.

Saturday night was a doozie.

Had a prescription called in, headed to the pharmacy, and my car broke down. It was dark by then, I felt awful, aches and chills, and now my car wouldn't start.

On my drive there, I had been listening to an Anthony Robbins CD as he interviewed Steven Covey about following your life's gift. And there I sat. Freezing with a fever, and now in tears, realizing I had a new crisis to solve. I felt very very alone and overwhelmed. Who do I call? I'm in unchartered waters here.

The CD player was dead too, but Anthony Robbins' voice kept repeating in my head - all of the positive mumbo jumbo hype he talked about so elequently seemed in such dramatic opposition to what I was experiencing.

This is where the rubber meets the road friends.

I realized sitting there I could get madder and more bitter and self-pitying than a one-legged man in a butt kickin' contest, or I could get humble. Either, or, but not both.

It's Monday morning now. I'm following up on my car in the shop - having been able to get it there safely. I had a sweet weekend in spite of my car loss, in spite of feeling under the weather, in spite of the Steelers losing the Superbowl : ) I feel more clear headed and am hopeful this week is going to be a good one. I wish my car wasn't in the shop, but, that's part of owning a car isn't it?

A couple of verses hit me this morning in my Bible time that seemed to ring true to my car drama.

Romans 5:6 "When we were utterly helpless Christ came at just the right time . . . "
Helpless moments are our most transparent moments - in moments when we are at the end of ourselves, we are able to acknowledge just how dependent we are. That's not a bad thing . . . ugh . . . not a comfortable thing, but not a bad thing. Christ did not fix my car, but trusting Christ fixed my character in that moment.

Ephesians 4:31 "Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words . . . instead be kind, tenderhearted, forgiving . . . "

In those moments where life really does a number on us, we choose. Either, or. Instead. Bitterness OR tenderness. Rage, anger, OR forgiving, kindness.

That decision is 100% up to us personally. That truth is upsetting at some moments, empowering at others.

When the rubber meets the road, bitterness is an option. Peace of character is too.

Pick one.

Life will continue to be life, with its car breakdowns and all. That will never change. Thankfully God has given us the opportunity every single day -

Either - OR.

You choose.