A life lesson

I plan to continue to post entries every Sunday that are along the same lines of what I have been posting, but every now and then I have a thought that I really feel like God wants me to share. I hope it benefits someone. 🙂

Something happened today that really got me thinking about a few things.

I work in a place where I encounter people who are, to put it nicely, crazy. They lose their minds over things that are out of my control and say hurtful things. I have not always responded in the best way outwardly or inwardly. I find myself dwelling on all of the things I wish I had said in response to their cruel words. It is like the event follows me even after it is all over with. I tell the story painting the crazy customer in the worst shade possible and me in the best. Don’t get me wrong, they usually are pretty absurd and, in the world’s eyes, deserve everything I am saying about them, but is that how I am called to act?

Today I was in line at Walmart and an older black man got in line behind me. I immediately knew something was wrong as he began to throw racial slurs that didn’t even apply to me behind my back. I was hoping that he was on a Bluetooth talking to someone, but as I glanced behind me I noticed there wasn’t one. When he saw me glance back he then began to mutter quite loudly about how I shouldn’t be looking at him and he was fixing to kill me and bury me alive. Then he proceeded to say some rather vulgar things that he was going to do to me. I was concerned and didn’t want to accuse him of something he wasn’t guilty of. So, I turned around and asked him if he was talking to me or someone else because I couldn’t tell. He said that I was mistaken and he was talking about Walmart itself. I really didn’t believe him but didn’t want to prolong the conversation as I could tell something was very wrong with this man. He said many other things which I chose to ignore and I checked out and left all while he was continuing to talk about me behind my back.

I have absolutely no idea why this man was saying all these horrible things to me. I did absolutely nothing to deserve it. And yet my reaction to him was completely different than my reactions to customers in the past. And none of them have ever threatened to bury me alive outside. If I heard someone else tell that story, I probably would have piped in with how I wouldn’t have taken that craziness and would have immediately called the cops on him. Well, I didn’t do any of that. I was more focused on wondering how a person gets to that point. The point where they say vile things to people for no apparent reason. Did he even realize how horrible he was being? Was he completely out of his mind? What could possibly cause a person to behave in such a manner? Instead of responding to all of his comments, I let it go. Everything inside of me wanted to tell him he was a jerk and I was going to call the cops on him, but where would that have gotten me? Probably buried alive somewhere.

I have seen people return fire with fire and it never turns out well. When I find myself dwelling on what I should have or could have said in response to all the people who insult me for no reason, I need to start praying that I would be able to forgive them and treat them far better than they treated me. I feel like I did that with the man in line at Walmart. I can’t say I have done the same in the past with my crazy customers. This is something I want to change. I want to start living my life in a way that paints people in a better light than they deserve. A life where I don’t wish I had been more sinful than I was and instead am grateful that Christ has helped me show self-control. I am praying that my stories in the future will show how God is using me to extend kindness and grace where normally none would be given.

I’m tired of letting the crazies rule my thoughts at the workplace. I am ready to dwell on my Savior and
let go of the pain their hurtful words can cause.

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