Reactions

There is so much to be learned, everyday, from every interaction and situation. Lately, I have been thinking a lot about reactions - mine specifically. I have been asking the Lord to show me what I can do differently with respect to my reactions. I have reactions to people, situations, words, emotions and even TRAFFIC!!! I am asking the Lord to stretch me in this area and make me more like Him.

He brought me to John 8, where the bible tells the story of the woman caught in the act of adultery. I have read this story many times and have heard countless preachers give their "angles" on it. The Lord brought me some new revelation from it today. He brought me to the point of HIS reaction.

When the accusers brought the woman before Jesus, they were, by all accounts of the law, "correct". They were correct about the woman, about her actions and about the punishment that was called for in that day...stoning. But Jesus paused. He did not react right away. He stooped down and (for all we know) doodled in the sand. It could be that Jesus was buying some time while He sought the heart of the Father. If Jesus had the heart of the Father, He would have God's wisdom to react like Him. Because, although the accusers were "correct", they were not "right"! Jesus did not simply react to what the crowd of accusers demanded, or even what the law demanded. He sought the heart of God and then reacted with the heart of God toward the woman.

I am challenged by this! I am challenged to stop reacting with a righteous piety that demands fulfillment of lawful consequences. I am challenged to take a holy side-bar with Jesus and gain His perspective on what is RIGHT in each situation. What is God's best? And that is not always what is owed to us! Thank God for that!

One of my sons had been particularly RIDICULOUS on a rainy Monday morning and I did the proper "natural consequences" thing that we as parents (who will never be accused of being an enabler) do!!!  As I gave him the verbal "what for" and dropped him at the school door to sort it for himself, I pulled away and attempted to change gears and mentally prepare for all of the drama that awaits me at the office. The Lord would not allow the gears to shift. He was so clear with me that while I was "correct", I was not "right"! The Lord showed me that HE was trying to develop something in my son and that morning I had hijacked HIS lessons of GRACE and MERCY. Because of my sons early years, these are not concepts that settle easily into his sweet heart. Further, his security in where he stands with those who love him is shaky at best. I wept. I, in my obnoxious type-A way, had sorted it logically (much like the accusers from John 8). I was "correct", but I was not "right"! I should've taken the proverbial stoop into the sand, pausing long enough to hear what God's purposes were for that situation. Instead, in my haughty, self-sufficiency, I handled this child that the Lord wanted to soothe.

People around us can be correct and not be right. I love how Ann Voskamp says "life is not an emergency." I try to remember those words each day as I go about my routine, but I am learning they are even more important when I am under pressure. S L O W I N G down is very helpful, and equally as difficult. It is, however, much easier than walking around constantly repairing what I have damaged in my hurried state.