Have you ever been in a situation or a conversation with a coworker, friend, family member, or loved one where no matter how great, wonderful, and positive your day is going, someone misconstrues what you said, words become heated, bringing your happiness to an all-time low?
Some people are quick to anger, or have a critical spirit. How do you react to ‘words that were put in your mouth’?
In your head, you’re thinking, “I never said that” or “What are you talking about?” or “What just happened?” although many times you remain quiet, and say nothing, lest you incite an argument.
We’ve all probably been the recipient (and accuser) different times in our lives.
No matter how hard you try to decipher misinterpreted words, often, it’s not possible. There’s got to be an underlying reason. Right? Maybe there’s something else on their minds, maybe they had a bad day….
Sometimes, situations escalate. You may not talk to that person for days, months, or even years.
Life happens. And in the scheme of life, Sh** happens.
The above phrase reminds me of my first girlfriend’s trip to Honolulu, Hawaii. On a strict daily budget, the four of us visited the local McDonald’s. After receiving our food, we garnered seats at a table, partially protected by a roof overhang in an open-air atmosphere. Deb and Cheryl sat under the roofed area; Jo Ellen and I sat outside.
As I began to nibble on my Filet-O-Fish and fries, I noticed several pigeons inching closer to our table.
“Don’t feed the pigeons, they’ll poop on you,” Jo Ellen advised.
I didn’t want to hear what she said. I just figured those pigeons must be hungry.
Soon, I felt a ‘plop’ directly on top of my head. A warm, white liquid began trickling down my bangs, onto my stylish sunglasses, and landing onto my Filet-O-Fish sandwich. Quickly, the tarter sauce and the ‘white liquid’ became one.
The feeling of misinterpreted words mentioned earlier, felt eerily similar to the pigeon pooping on my head.
So what can you and I do to remedy these situations?
With the pigeon poop dilemma, I located the nearest restroom, put my head under the faucet, and washed out the unpleasantry with clean water. I proceeded to enjoy the limitless beauty of the tropical island.
Sometimes, it’s not that easy with relationships.
The Bible tells us to stay calm.
Proverbs 14:29 says, “Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.”
I especially like this quote from James 1:19-20 —
“Understand this my brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.”
Wow. What a powerful verse. Especially, the last sentence.
Human anger doesn’t produce the righteousness God desires.
Try to talk about what just happened with each other, in a calm, respectful manner.
The Feels Like Home blog suggests to pray for yourself, pray for the other person, and pray for the situation. People can’t change people. Only God can change people.
And above all, love one another.
“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism…”
Peace out, and love