“‘Cause I can’t wait to figure out what’s wrong with me
So I can say this is the way that I used to be”
-lyric from John Mayer song “Split Screen Sadness”
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery;20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
The fruit of the spirit is … forebearance.
Forbearance: patient self-control; restraint and tolerance.
Divorce recovery: it is not an easy path.
I am stuck on the fruit of the spirit “forbearance” because I have NOT forborne others well these days. I have not been very forbearing. I see you, you who read this, I know I have failed you. I have yelled at you in a parking lot, over a meal, on the phone. I have lied to you. Many of those “acts of the flesh” described in Galatians 5 have been obvious to me.
I blame the whole world for misery. Darn John for divorcing me and ruining my life. Darn that person and and that person and that person and that person! Darn world! Darn climate! Darn everything! Darn neighbors who don’t even notice I am gone. Darn the neighbors who notice I am gone and assume I left.
Blaming feels like it helps, but it deepens the trench of misery. Blaming others offers me the right to lack forbearance.
What is WRONG with me???!
As John Mayer says….if I can just figure out what is wrong with me, I can change and look back and say “That was how I used to be.” Instead of this is how I AM.
- I centered my thoughts and prayers on forbearance
- Charlene directed me to Philippians 4
- I reconnected with Karen in one of those amazing God “coincidences” – which I am pretty sure God orchestrates to remind me God exists
- Peggy linked me to Oprah and Deepak’s meditations on desire and I started rereading that John Eldredge book on Desire
- I continued forward into the darkness, one step in front of the other
4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
May the God of peace be with us all….or rather….
May we know that the God of peace is with us.
Let’s Get Happy.
I’ll explain more in part 2 of this series, “Forbearance” or “How not to lose your patience at the Wells Fargo teller”.
And….no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should…
Hey John Mayer….I don’t think anything is actually wrong with me.