You Always Have a Choice

Brick WallThis is something that I often forget when the heat is on.

I feel like I need to step in and take control of the “wall” I’ve just hit. I think that by wagging my boney finger in that walls face, it will move or, better yet, bow to my commanding voice!

I think that I’m showing the wall who’s the boss! I’m convincing the wall of my superior logic or dazzling it with my lightening speed and clever comebacks. I’m expecting that the wall will crumble at my feet or cower in the corner—but instead the wall looms ever bigger as I hit it even harder.

The problem is, when I try to control the wall, I’ve already lost the battle. The only thing I’m convincing the wall of, is that I’m reckless with my words, my emotions and, simply put, out of control.

What I need to remember when I feel up against the wall, is that controlling the wall is NOT my only option.

I need to remember that I have a choice to turn a chaotic, out of control situation into one that is yielded—in controlbecause I can yield myself to God who is always in control.

Christ wants me to intentionally choose to surrender to His power, so that He can bring His grace, peace and redemptive touch to the chaotic situation.

What does that look like, you say?

It looks like …

  • A humble admission of my failure.
  • A whispered prayer rather than a word spoken in anger.
  • A focus on what I can control, instead of trying to control what I can’t.
  • A willingness to examine myself, rather than examine my offender’s actions.
  • An offer of forgiveness, even if my offender never admits his or her wrong.
  • A gentle, loving example that perseveres through this unfair moment—shouldering the wrong, even absorbing the wrong—because that’s what Christ would do.

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” –Romans 12:21 (NIV)

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” –Galatians 5:22 (NIV)

photo credit by Steve Snodgrass

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    22 responses to “You Always Have a Choice”

    1. Beth … I love that we get to choose to respond instead of reacting, be empowered rather than feel powerless, be strong in our decisions rather than be victims. This is good stuff, girl!

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    2. Beth … I love that we get to choose to respond instead of reacting, be empowered rather than feel powerless, be strong in our decisions rather than be victims. This is good stuff, girl!

      Like

    3. I love this – I need this:

      An offer of forgiveness, even if my offender never admits his or her wrong.
      A gentle, loving example that perseveres through this unfair moment—shouldering the wrong, even absorbing the wrong—because that’s what Christ would do.-

      My question is what do you do with the hurt? How do you stop it – or do we still live with it loving through the pain – because it can be a lifetime of pain.

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    4. I love this – I need this: An offer of forgiveness, even if my offender never admits his or her wrong.A gentle, loving example that perseveres through this unfair moment—shouldering the wrong, even absorbing the wrong—because that’s what Christ would do.- My question is what do you do with the hurt? How do you stop it – or do we still live with it loving through the pain – because it can be a lifetime of pain.

      Like

    5. This is so true. We can’t control others. We aren’t responsible for their behavior, but we are responsible for our own response to their behavior!

      I remember when my kids were younger and telling me about their conflict with a friend, and I would ask “Well, what did YOU say? What did YOU do?” I wanted them to focus on their part of the conflict.

      As you said, we need to look at our behavior and apologize for OUR part, whether their forgiveness is offered or whether OUR forgiveness is accepted.

      It hurts to hit that wall. We need Jesus to help us keep on loving and keep on forgiving because we certainly can’t do it on our own! Thanks for hosting today.

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    6. This is so true. We can’t control others. We aren’t responsible for their behavior, but we are responsible for our own response to their behavior!I remember when my kids were younger and telling me about their conflict with a friend, and I would ask “Well, what did YOU say? What did YOU do?” I wanted them to focus on their part of the conflict.As you said, we need to look at our behavior and apologize for OUR part, whether their forgiveness is offered or whether OUR forgiveness is accepted.It hurts to hit that wall. We need Jesus to help us keep on loving and keep on forgiving because we certainly can’t do it on our own! Thanks for hosting today.

      Like

    7. What an AWESOME perspective on controlling!! I love it and can’t wait to share it with others… THANK you for sharing this, Beth…I’m sharing it on Intentionally Your’s Facebook page!!

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    8. What an AWESOME perspective on controlling!! I love it and can’t wait to share it with others… THANK you for sharing this, Beth…I’m sharing it on Intentionally Your’s Facebook page!!

      Like

    9. I have often tripped up on the “focus on myself instead of others” part — for years. Lots of sad years. I could tell my children, as Nan mentioned, to focus on what they contributed to a problem, but didn’t practice what I preached.

      It both hurts and heals and humbles to do so.

      Thanks, Beth!

      Like

    10. I have often tripped up on the “focus on myself instead of others” part — for years. Lots of sad years. I could tell my children, as Nan mentioned, to focus on what they contributed to a problem, but didn’t practice what I preached. It both hurts and heals and humbles to do so. Thanks, Beth!

      Like

    11. Ah, self-control. Do you know what really kicks me in the pants, Beth? When I’m pounding the wall, and my six-year-old says, “Mom, that’s not good self-control.” To be more like Christ… And to see him in my kids. I’m grateful for the chance to do both.

      Like

    12. Ah, self-control. Do you know what really kicks me in the pants, Beth? When I’m pounding the wall, and my six-year-old says, “Mom, that’s not good self-control.” To be more like Christ… And to see him in my kids. I’m grateful for the chance to do both.

      Like

    13. I like what that looks like, Beth. Painting a picture for us with the practicals. Thanks.

      Like

    14. Hey Girlfriend, grab the popcorn! You WON the ‘Ring the Bell’ DVD! Email me your address … and ENJOY!

      Like

    15. Hey Girlfriend, grab the popcorn! You WON the ‘Ring the Bell’ DVD! Email me your address … and ENJOY!

      Like

    16. Uggh.. so much conviction here. ABSORBING the wrong- that’s a powerful reminder. And a hard one. Thanks for never letting me settle for a mediocre marriage, Beth!

      Like

    17. Love this! A new Linking Party begins THIS Saturday over at
      Thet2women.com and we would love if you would link this up there on Sat!
      Thanks! Here’s the link:
      http://thet2women.com/welcome-to-one-sharendipity-place/

      Like

    18. Love this! A new Linking Party begins THIS Saturday over at Thet2women.com and we would love if you would link this up there on Sat! Thanks! Here’s the link:http://thet2women.com/welcome-to-one-sharendipity-place/

      Like

    19. Walls are super hard but for some crazy reason I love to spar with them! I can relate to the forgiving even if they don’t apologize for their wrong. I hold myself back from experiencing God in control when I get hung up on others wrongdoings and their need to admit their own faults

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    20. Walls are super hard but for some crazy reason I love to spar with them! I can relate to the forgiving even if they don’t apologize for their wrong. I hold myself back from experiencing God in control when I get hung up on others wrongdoings and need to admit

      Like

    21. Unfortunately, all too often I finally come to that place after I have beat myself senseless on the wall. Love that verse from Galatians. It’s always a great reminder for me. 🙂

      Like

    22. Unfortunately, all too often I finally come to that place after I have beat myself senseless on the wall. Love that verse from Galatians. It’s always a great reminder for me. 🙂

      Like

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