Colossians 1:10: “so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God…”(NIV).
Have you ever had one of those days…weeks…months…years? When you know that you are crabby and you can’t do anything about it…or at least you aren’t trying hard enough to change your attitude or perspective on life? That nothing really horrible has happened to cause your bad mood…maybe instead you just are being a little too self-centered and not enough other-focused?
Well, I’m ashamed to admit it, but that has been me for the past few days. It all started with what I perceived as an injustice because my weekend didn’t go as I had planned. Do you see the common thread in the sentence written above – “my weekend, I planned?” Then, if that wasn’t bad enough, I chose to continue my bad attitude even while realizing I am blessed beyond measure and my family, loved ones, and friends didn’t deserve to be subjected to my “spoiled brat” treatment.
This went on until God woke me up early five days later. (I’m sometimes a slow learner.) Despite His seemingly endless patience with us as His children, just like biological parents, I think He was finally telling me, “Enough is enough.” He didn’t yell at me, He didn’t punish me by inflicting some sort of ailment or tragedy in my life – no, He lovingly reminded me that I was very blessed in life and needed to get my focus back in the right direction. I needed to refocus on Him and all the good in my life. I needed to start being a blessing to others instead of continuing to be a burden. I was really convicted. Not only had I hurt my Heavenly Father by my self-imposed selfishness, but I was hurting my family as well. They hadn’t done anything to deserve my bratty behavior.
After confessing to God for being a burden for the last five days, I vowed to find ways to be a blessing instead. Putting my focus back where it should be – on imitating Christ to others.
The irony of it all – When I am focused on “blessing myself” (which in turn burdens others to cater to my every whim), the blessings I receive fall short of my expectations. However, when I focus on blessing others and living the way my Heavenly Father wants me to, then He chooses when and how to bless me. And I have to say, those blessings usually knock my socks off. They are bigger, better, and far more imaginative than I could ever think of to bless myself with. And, I don’t know about you, but when I have to ask for something, it’s never as sweet as when someone catches me off guard and surprises me with a gift, token, act of service, whatever the surprise may be.
Not only do I hate the way I “look” when I’m turned inward and selfish, but I hate how I feel as well. I truly do not like being a burden to others, but at times do the very thing I hate. I think it’s time to apologize to those I have burdened for the last five days and start looking for ways I can bless them instead. I have some wasted time I need to make up for.
What does your life look like today – are you being a burden or a blessing?