Friday, May 13, 2011

DAY THIRTEEN: 30 Days to a No-Regrets Life

FYI: THE BLOGSPOT SITE HAS BEEN DOWN FOR 24 HRS FOR SOME REASON. IT DELETED 2 POSTS, SO I REPOSTED THEM. (Just letting you know in case you noticed something strange :)) Keep up with what day you are on in case it happens again.

DAY 13: Sandpaper. Smoothing the edges.
          It is easy to talk about resolving things with some people . . . then there are the sandpaper people. Sandpaper is used to smooth a surface, but it is not smooth when rubbed on our skin. Some people rub us that way. They irritate us. We are most likely all sandpaper to someone, like it or not. Sandpaper people are in God’s plan to smooth us. What interest would there be in life if everything went smooth and in harmony? Such bliss would rob us all of what we are intended to be.
These are the common types of people:
  • Measuring Tape people: These people let us know we don’t quite measure up. They judge by their own standards of righteousness.
  • Hammers: They are as subtle as a freight train, pushing their agendas on others and forcing their ways. They can be loud and demanding or subtle and manipulative, but they are stubbornly committed to using the force of their own will to get their way.
  • Skill Saws: They seem to be naturally gifted at cutting others down. They cut to the quick and leave others bleeding on the floor. They win verbal arguments every time- not because they are right, but because they know where to cut to weaken the other’s platform.
  • Vice grips: They get a grip and don’t know when to let go. They are extra needy and squeeze the life out of those around them, having no social or relational boundaries. They bounce from one crisis to another, needing support and encouragement.
  • Grinders: They have explosive personalities waiting to go off and send sparks flying.
  • Axes: They tend to be negative, complaining and always looking for ways to tear down the hopes and plans of others.
  • Hatchets: They take smaller chops than axes but hold on to past hurts and grudges longer. They don’t know how to “bury the hatchet.”
  • Putty People: (My pet peeve) They have no consistency, no backbone. They are so eager to please, always agreeable and change like a chameleon so you never really know who they are or what they really think. They always say yes. To me, they come across as dishonest.

          We are to look at ourselves before criticizing others. Jesus says in Matthew 7: “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? First, take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
          Notice, He did not say to ignore the sawdust. Pointing it out is not judgmental. It is to be said in a helpful, healing way. “Hey, you know you’ve got some sawdust in your eye. Let me help you with that.” That’s good, unless we whack them over the head with our plank that is sticking out of our eye.
          As far as when someone else criticizes us, or tries to help get the sawdust out of our eye, we can take it in stride. We must be selective and not ABSORB all of the criticism, nor should we dismiss it. The author says to do with it just as a piece of gum. Chew on it awhile, get the flavor and then spit it out. Take the good 10% and get rid of the other 90%. Don’t swallow it whole.
          A good way to look at the hammer people is that maybe God has placed them so closely in your life to toughen you and stand up to them even though it makes you uncomfortable. {This reminds me of the mean girl in “SOUL SURFER.” The surfer who lost her arm to a shark attack appreciated the competitiveness of the mean girl. It challenged her and made her feel like she was still a threat and good competition.}
          Maybe the measuring tape people are there so you will learn to look to God for approval instead of people.

          Everyone is in your life for a reason, AND you are in their lives for a reason. Reveal goodness to them.

          Living life in this way is quite challenging, but it is a new perspective. I feel an evolution . . .

Evolving for 17 more days,

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