What most people don’t know about me is that when my feelings are hurt or I’m frustrated, I tend to scrub my house from top to bottom, do laundry even if I have to dig in the closet for items to wash. Closets get straightened, drawers rearranged, and my pantry soon resembles the organized shelves in a grocery store. Finding things to stay busy helps me sort through all the darts rolling inside my head that I’d like to spit out in retaliation.
However, keeping my mouth shut and not responding as others may expect keeps me from having regrets or apologizing later. Other than my silence, no one would ever know there was a problem unless a tear escaped.
There are no jerking motions or things flying through the air. In fact, I can only remember one time I threw something at the wall, hoping it would break into a million pieces and make a point. It shattered all right, but to my dismay, it only caused a mess I had to clean up.
All that exertion during cleaning helps me physically overcome the emotional stress of the moment, while the spiritual side of me searches for ways to make peace, regardless of who is at fault. It doesn’t always work for the other person, but I encounter peace knowing I tried.
For me, screaming and yelling or calling names is senseless and could be deemed as childish. As the old saying goes, two wrongs don’t make a right. Yelling back and purposely trying to be hateful and cutting as the next person is belittling and destroys relationships.
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a
harsh word stirs up anger” (Proverbs 15:1 NIV).
In Matthew 27:29-30 people falsely accused Christ, mocked him, and called him names. Did he argue, show signs of anger, or try to prove them wrong? NO. The only time he showed righteous indignation was when “Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves” (Matthew 21:12 NIV).
He was the perfect picture of love, even through all the torture, dishonorable treatment, and accusations he suffered. He knew the truth would be revealed in good time, and it was.
I’ve been called a lot of names through the years, but Prudence and Peacemaker are by far my most revered. The negative ones I choose to forgive and try to forget.
Have I been perfect? No. None of us are perfect, but Isaiah 26:3 reminds me constantly, “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you.”
I do have my limits, as we all do, and it takes a tremendous amount of pushing to make me angry. Since my tendency is to overlook the negative and love unconditionally, I tend to get my feelings hurt rather than get angry. However, when I feel my tolerance level about to cave, I choose to whisper prayers for strength in hopes of maintaining my composure. It is my goal to be the Christ-like example He desires of me.
So, here you have it. If you haven’t tried my Clean House Therapy during tough times, you might find it helpful to relieve those negative vibes. Plus, your house will be spotless.
Then, rather than throwing verbal darts at the one causing a scene, bite your tongue and pray for God to intervene.