Focus: Deciding not to be angry
Psalm 37:8 (NKJV) Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret—it only causes harm.
It’s not hard to decide you’re going to be angry about something that really bothers you, but what if you decided not to be angry—even if you were bothered? What if you had every reason on earth to be angry about something that any person would agree was just not right—but you decided not to be angry?
Every day there are reasons you could choose to be angry. It could start off in the morning when the phone rings earlier than you’re ready to hear it. Or, maybe when you get to bed too late and sleep through the alarm. The beginning of your day can set the stage for how the whole thing is going to turn out. ‘Starting off on the wrong foot’ can cause everything else to be ‘off’ for the rest of the day.
Most nights, I’m up later than I want to admit. I relish the ‘quiet hours’ when I can think without distractions. The only problem is, I still have to get up in the morning…and some days it’s pretty hard. I confess I get annoyed when people assume I don’t need as much sleep as normal people. I get tired just like anybody else does.
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If you’re a person who doesn’t get a lot of sleep, whether it’s your choice, or not—there are attitude adjustments that are very necessary, if you’re going to have harmonious relationships with other people. Being up late and not getting very much sleep may not be your fault, but it won’t help anything if you’re bitter about it. Taking it out on the people around you because you’re tired, just isn’t fair. Even if you’ve been kept awake because of another person—being angry about it is destructive not only for them—but for you, too.
There are some things you can do to try to start your day off right.
Be realistic about how long it takes to get ready in the morning. As hard as it is—face the facts about how long it really takes you to get dressed and be at work on time or wherever you need to be.
Prepare for the next day before you go to bed at night. Figure out what you’re going to wear and get it ready, so you don’t have to spend time trying to do that before your brain is fully functioning.
Tidy up the kitchen and bathroom before you go to bed. It’s hard to get up and have to face a mess in the morning. As much as you want to forget about the dishes and the laundry—they’re not going to magically ‘go away’ during the night. It doesn’t take that long to ‘clear the surface’ so that when you get up in the morning you at least get off to a fresh start.
One thing I can’t stand is piles of laundry—dirty or clean. I estimate that it takes 5-7 minutes to fold an average load of laundry and probably 4-6 minutes to put it where it belongs once it’s folded. Nobody likes to look at or smell dirty clothes, towels, and bedding. Keep the laundry done. It’s just not as big of a deal as some people make it. Having clean clothes to wear that don’t have to be dug out of a pile is a comforting thing.
I believe general sloppiness can be a major source of annoyance. When things are helter skelter, it’s hard to find what you’re looking for—and everything just seems more difficult to deal with. It shouldn’t be one person’s job to keep everything clean, but if nobody else will do their share—just do it—and don’t use it as a reason to be ticked off. Give it up to God. Offer it to Him as a sacrifice. Being grouchy over having to take care of something that doesn’t belong to you is a poor choice. It’s far healthier to adopt a cheerful attitude and not let it wreck your day…or anyone else’s.
Some people have the attitude, ‘why should I clean it up when it’s just going to get dirty again?’ I’m sorry, but that is a lame attitude. If it’s the attitude of someone you live with—I feel sorry for you, but you’ll do yourself a favor if you shake it off and clean the mess up—rather than wait for someone else to do it. And again—don’t have a bad attitude about it.
I don’t have a spotless home, and the cleaning I do—I don’t necessarily do ‘for others’. Most of what I do, is for my own self-respect. Whether anybody comes over or not—I feel better when things are not all messed up.
I heard it said once that, ‘every step towards order—brings peace.’ Ordering our steps in right ways, includes not living in a state of anger. Creating an atmosphere in our home that encourages peace and well-being for everyone is like doing for others as we would enjoy having others do for us—with a happy heart.
Declaration: I will find new strength by considering what I can do on a daily basis to make conditions in my home more harmonious for myself, and everyone.
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All NEW STRENGTH posts are Copyright by Christina Cook Lee 2012. Please request permission to re-post or re-blog.