Following the inauguration, a segment of the population made their displeasure known, yet again, by marching, demonstrating, and ranting, ad infinitum, on social media. While they are totally within their rights to voice their opinions, I’m beyond ready to just get on with life. I’m tired of verbal fingers wagged in my face, being called a disgrace to women, and having my right to my own beliefs and opinions challenged. I’m weary of all the bellyaching, grousing, nasty words, and criticism. It’s time to accept reality, live your own life without trying to control mine, and move on!
All of us have areas in our lives where we find it difficult to move on. It only takes a scroll through social media to observe that. When people aren’t postulating about politics, they are complaining about being overlooked, overworked, overwhelmed, undervalued, or unhappy. They show us their stitches, casts, cuts, and bruises. Beyond that, their words often give us a glimpse of their fears and inner wounds.
So how do you move on when you’re wounded, offended, discouraged, disheartened, or just plain mad?
Turn off the reruns – How many times are we going to see repeat photos of a disinterested 10-year-old, a weary wife, an exhausted leader, street violence, and homemade placards? Just when things calm down a little, someone out there decides to stir things up again.
When you rerun memories of hurts, and pick the scabs of wounds, you can expect to take multiple steps backwards. Replaying offenses and ruminating over what you wish you could say and do to the offender ensures you’ll remain stuck where you are or move in the wrong direction.
Resist the urge to respond – It’s hard to refrain from firing back when you are attacked for what you stand for, or when someone criticizes you, spreads untruths about you, or baits you, hoping you’ll fight back. It’s human nature to want to “set things straight,” but you can’t move on if you’re mired in debate. It takes a mature, self-controlled person to smile and walk away, or as is usually the case in our culture, scroll to the next post without making a comment.
Practice patience – Honestly, this is a huge sticking point for me. While patience is not part of my nature, I have learned through the mistakes of impatience, that waiting is far superior. When we allow impatience free rein, we say and do things we usually regret later.
Extend grace – Grace is one of those commodities we expect others to extend to us, but often find it difficult to reciprocate. But give it a try. Be gracious when others aren’t. They may not understand or appreciate, but grace models the example of a loving heavenly Father.
Let go – A current advertizing campaign for a way to buy and sell used items shows people in impossible situations holding on to some antiquated item that is jeopardizing their safety and preventing them from escaping danger. They are encouraged to “let go” of the item, and as soon as a picture is snapped and posted, a person materializes who wants to purchase the item.
Sometimes a hurt becomes such a familiar part of our lives we’re hesitant to let it go, even when it’s detrimental to our health, because we can’t imagine what life would be without it and we’ve become accustomed to the sympathy and support it garners. While letting go of some element of our past is often difficult, it is freeing. And without all the baggage, you lighten your load mentally and emotionally, and can easily take the next step. So let go of what’s holding you back. Ignore the loud and opinionated. Move on. It’s a good thing to do.
“Stop being bitter and angry and mad at others. Don’t yell at one another or curse each other or ever be rude. Instead, be kind and merciful.” (Ephesians 4:31-32 CEV)
Sometimes a hurt becomes such a familiar part of our lives, we’re hesitant to let it go. @CandyArrington