Sunday, March 4, 2012

I Cannot Stand It When...

The commonest predilection of humankind is the nature of irritation; frustration emanating for no apparent reason. We just don’t like certain things, whether it’s people chewing loudly, sneezing on trains, being too snobbish, or the presence of a know-it-all. Many things are a cause for personally-defined irritation—sometimes these irritations are irrational.

We could easily fill a page with responses to the statement, “I cannot stand it when...”

There’s probably never an easier task when we get our minds into gear.

Now a truth beckons: irritations are pointless. Why do we willingly remain captive to potential frustration when some of these might be eased with a little internal work?

It’s All In The Acknowledgement

There’s a fair amount of truth regarding those frustrations that, somehow, remind us of the things we hate about ourselves.

Our weaknesses that we do little about, those we secretly repress, them that we despise, come out at us, to remind us, in the behaviour of other people. Yes, there’s something in the irrational irritation that’s very personal to us.

Thankfully we don’t have to leave these illogical irritations as they are. It’s easy to do something if we’re sick of losing control. We need to acknowledge the things we cannot bear before we can do something about them.

Getting Straight About Our Imperfections

Just as we’re all created unique, we’re all created imperfect, with many flaws. The moment we remind ourselves of this fact we’re not far from tolerating the very thing we cannot stand. Getting straight about our imperfections is the attraction of humility.

Humility might be a habit. The more we think about it, the more we focus on it, the more it becomes us. And we need it—to acknowledge, over and over again, that addressing the source of our irritations is about us, alone. It’s got nothing to do with the other person or people. God’s refining us by our annoyances—if we’ll allow.

Being as honest as we can, admitting those things we struggle with, we gain insights into ourselves, and God helps us; especially via prayer and sharing with important, trusted others these very flaws.

***

It’s a clue for us when things drive us up the wall. They’ll continue to rile us if we don’t do something about them. We need to acknowledge the things we cannot bear before we can do something about them. Once we’re honest we can get past many absurd irritations that confound us in frustration.

There’s not much point in allowing irritations to overwhelm us in frustration. We can do something about them. We need to acknowledge the things we cannot bear before we can do something about them.

© 2012 S. J. Wickham.


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