This morning during my quiet time this morning, I had a flashback of a high school acquaintance who found me on Facebook. After months of once-in-a-while connecting on Facebook, remembering school, talking about our families and just catching up over the past twenty years, we started to carry on some dialog. I was still fairly new to Facebook, but was writing my blog and just starting the Wonderfully Made page. It didn’t take long to know his stance on ‘religion’ and ‘Christians’. He is an atheist, and used every opportunity to share his opinions, argue his side and demean those of faith; often requesting friendships with my friends, and commenting on their pages as well.
Many times, I asked him to comment with respect, and not post rhetoric over and over, arguing the same thing; I never went to his page to post my opinion, or anyone else’s page for that matter. I acted in love and kindness, yet, he would offend, apologize to continue blazing through my posts, or my pages and even my friends’ page. Friends, we do not have to put up with people like that. I am thankful I have learned to remove the negatives from my life; I still have a few, but have found other ways of dealing with them, until my circumstances can change.
As I thought of “this friend”, I remembered some other people who I have eliminated from my life due to excessive verbal battering or negativity. Believe me this does not come easily. My husband says, “Shawn is so nice, she would be a friend to Attila the Hun”. Now, I wouldn’t say I am that nice, but I do, or at least, did give people way too much leeway.
While talking to a friend tonight, which was basically on the same subject, I realized a few questions to ask when I am in a circumstance that is negative or dealing with a person who is not so nice. Not taking things personally is an area I really focus on. First, ask, “is this from God?” And, by the way, you already know the answer, if it is negative, not edifying or encouraging, it is not God, and if it is not God, who is it? The enemy, Satan, the devil… NOT GOOD. Second, thing to ask is, “is this a valuable statement? Is it true?”
Again, I was assured that when you remove things or people that are negative from my life, there is more energy to do things worthwhile, rather than fighting emotions. Thank You Father for giving me the strength and insight to change my own environment. Thank You for choice.
When we listen to the world (the enemy, Satan, the devil), we dismiss what God has for us. I don’t want to dismiss anything else. Give yourself permission to remove all that is not God… and hang on to what is His.
“The world is unprincipled. It's dog-eat-dog out there! The world doesn't fight fair. But we don't live or fight our battles that way—never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren't for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity.” ~2 Corinthians 10:3-6 (The Message)