28 July 2007

Emotional dwarfs

My pastor used to say that a difficult testing area for a leader is in the area of emotions. We can rise up and lead and attempt great things for God. But down from the stage and in our own rooms, we may crumble when someone uttered a word against us. Our whole world may just collapse for that day or that week.

Last week, in my classes, I faced that challenge from my students. One of them shouted at me with, "'Cher, I am talking to you! Can't hear is it?" when I was busy trying to take attendance of my class. I retorted back straightaway that I was busy and asked him to hold on. Obviously he was not happy and neither was I. We had a cold war there and then. Later when I tried to explain to him, he simply walked away and ignored me totally.

What do I do? Scream at him? Report him to the discipline master? Take revenge and fail him? I let the matter cool down and did nothing then. Inside, I was in emotionally turmoil. Anger took over. Questions raged all over my mind. I was not able to handle it well, especially when a 17 year old teen shook my world.

At home, I realised that I would get angry very fast. It takes a little wrong word from my gals and I'll be screaming mad. It doesn't help when one of my gals is more difficult to handle. It must have been tough and frightening for my neighbours to hear the outbursts! If my wife wrongly accuses me, I will yell back. So totally un-christian like. Sigh. I noticed that my children have caught this bad behaviour from me too. Sigh, sigh.

How do I get a hold of my emotions? How can I be less angry?

I remember John's words, "He must increase, but I must decrease" Jesus said it well, "the seed must die" (Jn.12.24). Dead people have no anger. I am frequently angry because I have not died to the world and its lusts. I am still very much in the world. I need to die to self (ego) and to the world.

Simple words. Difficult words to do.

Die.

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