SO after a quick second and making sure she wasn't in labor I turned to see what she was looking at. The entire back window of her brand new SUV was busted out and laying shattered on the ground. A million pieces of tinted glass everywhere. We both shifted gears and she went to get Al and I took care of Ranger. After a few moments we realized that their car wasn't the only car vandalized. There were four cars in their parking lot alone and at least another four or five in the lot behind them. Sadly, one of the other cars in their lot to get hit was also Al's car. Apparently this is a trend that the tenants are getting fed up with, UNDERSTANDABLY. Some punk kids going on destruction sprees just for the fun of it....not cool.
So I hung out to wait till the cops came and I'm so glad I did. I witnessed something that made me so proud of both Rae and Al. This was a prime opportunity to go off on a justified rant and be totally po'd and turn into a beast and yadda yadda yadda.......but instead I saw both of them choose to stay calm in the midst of it, yeah they were ticked, but NEITHER of them fed into the raw emotions and let it control them. Instead they both focused in on God and kept their cool and CHOSE to NOT ALLOW this to get to them. I hope I would have handled it the same way, but I don't know for sure how I would have responded.
So anyway........as I drove home I was talking to God about this blog entry. No, I'm not crazy or being overly religious, but part of why I'm blogging and part of why I am the Pollyanna that I am is because I believe EVERYTHING, even something like this has a purpose and has good come of it. So if I'm not passing along what I believe that purpose or message to be in this blog then what's the point? I knew this event was going to be the centerpiece of the blog today but I wanted to make sure I wasn't just retelling a story, but really learning a lesson from it.
So as I drove along and processed the events of the previous hour I kept seeing the picture of Rachel's glass window shattered on the ground, all those shards of glass. I also kept hearing those words over and over, shards of glass, shards of glass, shards of glass. Those shards of glass must somehow represent us...or something we humans do. HMMMMMM.....
So when I got home I decided to look up the definition of a shard, now I know what it means, but sometimes you get clearer insight when you actually pull up the complete definition of a word.
So here we go, ready? Good.
Websters defines a SHARD as a piece or fragment of a brittle substance.
Interesting, but I'm not really feeling a great insight yet, YOU? Yeah I didn't think so.... lets go a bit deeper, shall we?
The definition of the word BRITTLE according to Websters is something easily broken, cracked, or snapped. Easily disrupted, overthrown, or damaged. Frail, perishable, mortal, transitory, and evanescent. Easily hurt or offended, sensitive, and sharp. Lacking warmth, depth, or generosity of spirit, cold.
WHEW!!!!! That is a whole lot of adjectives for such a small word! However, it sure as heck gets the point across doesn't it? Being brittle is just fine when we're talking about a sheet of glass, a butterfly wing or even peanut brittle, but it's NOT fine when we're talking about a person. Have you ever felt broken, cracked or damaged by a person or circumstance? Have you felt the rug pulled out from under you as things disrupt, overthrow or damage YOUR plans? Do you ever get hurt, offended or over sensitive when things don't go the way you wanted or expected? Worse yet, have others accused you of lacking warmth, depth or being cold?
HMMMM.....that requires some painfully deep soul searching doesn't it.....I don't know about you, but in the interest of keeping it real here, I've fallen into each of these categories at different times in my life. In fact some of these I'm still working on, especially when thinking of certain family members of mine. Sorry, but it's true.....blood may be thicker than water, but thickness doesn't always equate quality. I think it's safe to say then that all of the things associated with being brittle are NOT the kind of traits we want to have associated with our own selves.
Now, let's go a bit deeper still.
What would be the opposite, the antonym of Brittle? That would be, robust, healthy, strong. When I saw those words I wondered if there is a translation of the Bible that uses the word robust. Well, there is....and ironically...or maybe not so ironically, there is one verse that in multiple translations interchanges each of those three words to convey the same thought. What does the thought refer to? Ready for this? bitterness, envy, jealousy and runaway emotions. HMMMM.....all things that come out of the emotions associated with being brittle. I think that broken glass definitely conveyed a message, not just to myself but to all of us.
We need to have our focus on God....in fact, we need to be so focused on Him, so robust,healthy and strong in Him and His word, the Bible, that when things hit us like that weapon hit the glass on those cars, we don't shatter because we are brittle.
Proverbs 14:30 (The Message)30 A sound mind makes for a robust body,
but runaway emotions corrode the bones.
Ok, soooooooooo if we are going to have a robust body we need a sound mind. How do we get that? Well, let's go back to the source.
2 Timothy 1:7 (New King James Version)7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
Ok, so the sound mind isn't something we acquire, it was already given to us. (Yeah I know, I don't always feel like it either....but tell your fickle feelings to kiss off.) Now, WHYYYYYYYY would we be told in the same verse that we have been given a sound mind, that we also HAVEN'T been given a spirit of fear? Well, for that answer let's go back to the definition of the word brittle.
something easily broken, cracked, or snapped. Easily disrupted, overthrown, or damaged. Frail, perishable, mortal, transitory, and evanescent. Easily hurt or offended, sensitive, and sharp. Lacking warmth, depth, or generosity of spirit, cold.
I don't know about you, but when I feel those emotions, especially towards my biological father and his less than loving family....they are definitely rooted in fear. Fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of betrayal, fear of never being GOOD enough....and lots of others. Well if those feelings are not God given, then I don't want them! Who DOES?!?!?!? So the antidote? The anti-fear, anti-brittle solution? The only way to get and maintain a sound mind is to debunk fear in all it's faces by dissecting each one and applying the truth in it's place. So here is what the Bible has to say about who I, who YOU REALLY are and the value we REALLY have.
In an effort to save space I will not include the full verses, but here is a link to Bible Gateway where you can pull up the complete verse in any translation and language you prefer.
Bible Gateway Passage Lookup
I'm going to close with this list, I don't really think there is much else to say after that. Don't feel bad about being brittle, we all have in the past...and we all have areas where we still are. Instead, focus on reinforcing those brittle areas with TRUTH.....the Bible IS TRUTH. That way when things come at you to destroy you and turn your brittleness into shards, you will be stronger and less likely to shatter.
Who I Am In Christ
|I am accepted... |
| John 1:12 ||I am God's child. |
| John 15:15 ||As a disciple, I am a friend of Jesus Christ. |
| Romans 5:1 ||I have been justified. |
| 1 Corinthians 6:17 ||I am united with the Lord, and I am one with Him in spirit. |
| 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 ||I have been bought with a price and I belong to God. |
| 1 Corinthians 12:27 ||I am a member of Christ's body. |
| Ephesians 1:3-8 ||I have been chosen by God and adopted as His child. |
| Colossians 1:13-14 ||I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins. |
| Colossians 2:9-10 ||I am complete in Christ. |
| Hebrews 4:14-16 ||I have direct access to the throne of grace through Jesus Christ. |
|I am secure... |
| Romans 8:1-2 ||I am free from condemnation. |
| Romans 8:28 ||I am assured that God works for my good in all circumstances. |
| Romans 8:31-39 ||I am free from any condemnation brought against me and I cannot be separated from the love of God. |
| 2 Corinthians 1:21-22 ||I have been established, anointed and sealed by God. |
| Colossians 3:1-4 ||I am hidden with Christ in God. |
| Philippians 1:6 ||I am confident that God will complete the good work He started in me. |
| Philippians 3:20 ||I am a citizen of heaven. |
| 2 Timothy 1:7 ||I have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind. |
| 1 John 5:18 ||I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me. |
|I am significant... |
| John 15:5 ||I am a branch of Jesus Christ, the true vine, and a channel of His life. |
| John 15:16 ||I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit. |
| 1 Corinthians 3:16 ||I am God's temple. |
| 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 ||I am a minister of reconciliation for God. |
| Ephesians 2:6 ||I am seated with Jesus Christ in the heavenly realm. |
| Ephesians 2:10 ||I am God's workmanship. |
| Ephesians 3:12 ||I may approach God with freedom and confidence. |
| Philippians 4:13 ||I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me. |