Peace of My Heart

An encouraging voice to drown out the noise

~Don’t Deposit Opinions~ November 12, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — Valerie Rutledge @ 10:20 am
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“What’s the matter, Emma?”

I had just picked up the last of my school kids yesterday and my typically chatty, smiley girl was sulking.

“Nothing.”

I lowered the rear view mirror so I could quickly lock eyes with her.

“Emma, we all can tell something is wrong so just spill it.”

“Susie Q called me stupid!” (Name changed 😉)

“Well, are you stupid?”

“NO!!”

“Of course you’re not, so why does it matter what she said? Baby, just because someone said something about you doesn’t make it true.”

And that seemed to be enough for my girl. She was right back to her normal self, not giving another thought to the opinion of one of her peers. That’s when it hit me, how many times have I sulked over something someone said to or about me?

We all have had someone be the opposite of nice to us. Someone’s called you a name, spread a rumor about you, sent you a nasty-gram and in the spirit of total honesty, you’ve been the guilty party as well, I know I have. Some of you blessed souls out there genuinely seem to have the ability to let it roll right off your back while others really struggle with letting opinions take root. I’m somewhere in the middle, depending on the offender and the depth of “meanness,” I can either shrug it off or take it to heart. When it comes to what others think about you, you have a choice, save it in your memory bank or delete it.

While I do think it’s wise to give thought to what others say about you, brief thought that is, I do not believe it’s healthy to let it alter how you see yourself. My husband, wise man that he is, once shared this little nugget of truth with me when I was seriously damaged goods because of another’s words, “Who you are is defined by how you live and how God sees you. People’s opinions, although worth considering at times, are not the final definition.”

Words hurt, friends, I get that. It is impossible to control what others say so it is up to us to guard our hearts and minds from such things. smile

 

 

~The Exasperated Sigh & An Eye Roll~ May 7, 2013

I currently have three pre-teens coexisting under one roof.  I know, I accept your condolences.  While most of the time they are pretty awesome kids, some days they can be a tad bit testy.  Yesterday morning, for example, I asked one of said three to take the dog out.  For the sake of sparing them humiliation, I will leave their name out…this time.  The poor dog was pacing anxiously at the front door and I had been hounding my kiddo for 5 minutes to take her out.  On the final request, I got the exasperated sigh accompanied by the eye roll that every child this age has perfected.  A little side note that you need to know about me, nothing irritates me more than having someone huff at me.  It invokes an instant reaction of wrath that no amount of back-pedaling can escape.  I believe my words were, “Huff at me one more time and find out what happens!”

Now isn’t that a nice way for us to start out our morning?!  Who is this hateful woman speaking on my behalf and where did that sweet-spirited, gentle momma go?

What is that one thing that gets under your skin more than anything else in this world?  What kind of crazed lunatic does it turn you into?

No matter what your pet peeve may be, you can confess it to God as a weakness and ask Him to help you overcome it.  If it is something that really grates on your nerves, as the huff & eye roll does mine, than don’t expect an instant cure of your short-coming.  As was evident from my reaction to the resistant dog-walker yesterday, I obviously am a work in progress.

A scripture that I try to recall to memory when one of my little angels has the audacity to cut their eyes at me is Proverbs 15:1:

“A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.”

(NLT)

You better believe that’s the truth!  When I snap at my child because they have irritated me, do you think they quickly correct their behavior and apologize for their rudeness?  Uh, no.  My short fuse only agitates them further, escalating the situation making both of us so on edge that we’re armed and ready for battle.  All I have done by acting in anger was set a poor example for my kids of how to handle emotions.

My child was wrong to show me disrespect through their actions, but I was equally wrong in my response.  What I should have done was explain, calmly, why I found their attitude unacceptable and given them a chance to apologize.  What could have been a teaching moment for my child, ended up being a rebuke aimed squarely in my direction.

This is not the kind of momma I desire to be.  I want my kids to see me respond with grace and humility, not unforgiveness & anger.

After all, it is the wise woman who builds her home while the foolish woman destroys it with her own two hands. twohouses (paraphrase of Proverbs 14:1)