Last week my days were filled with all sorts of communication concerning a family member, which became overwhelming to keep everyone in the loop. Text messages, phone calls, emails, and repeating information to keep everyone updated wore me down. Trying to speak with the different personalities I try to communicate with was very difficult; some like the facts, some like to talk in circles, some are just plain chatty, and repeating themselves exhausted me. 

Then navigating through the responses on how to handle the situation, of course, this isn’t in a room where all parties can talk – no, it is on three-way calls, or,  talking to one person, hang up and repeat all that was said to another.

Emotions got involved, not that feelings are wrong. But, when we allow how we feel to alter our normal behavior or personality, it is time to pull back and evaluate ‘why’ we are getting upset. Then go back to the table (so to speak) and come up with a solution. I am evaluating ‘why’ I let my emotions become strings that the puppet master manipulated my behavior. I am not saying I am not accountable for handling the situation wrong, and I need to ask those involved to forgive my harsh demeanor and words. 

Though I think about how often this scenario happens regarding all critical issues. Sadly more often than not, when emotions become heightened, people pull out, become unengaged, and throw in the towel.

No wonder people are relucted to get involved in the community in which they live. With the responsibilities, one has with family, work, and home, the thought of adding one more thing to their plate could cause one to turn their back and say, “let someone else deal with it.”

King David probably thought this way from time to time. His memory as a shepherd boy with the green valleys and gentle streams probably had him consider taking his crown off and stepping away from the demands of being a leader. I believe the words he declared when he threw the stone that killed the giant rang in his heart to continue. What were those words? “Is there not a cause? (1 Samuel 17:29 KJV)

“Cause” also means history. Is there not a history to fight for? Is there not a history that we can anchor our faith in? 

You may wonder what this has to do with last week’s emotional week.

I am encouraged and find the energy to continue communicating with my extended family by remembering our history. Yes, we are dysfunctional, but I need the focus on the good each person brings. We all want the same thing; we have different approaches to achieving those things. By giving each person the space to communicate without snarky remarks or disdainful facial expressions, discord loses its power. 

When I know that I will be involved in a conversation of great importance, I humble myself and pray for Jesus to be in the mist; Jesus: Prince of Peace. I humble myself to keep pride out of the conversation and pray the way Jesus instructed in Matthew 6:9-13 “your will be done.”

We all have those testimonies, HIStory, when God answered our prayers. The cities we live in have a history of being great in one way or another. Not great in a prideful way as “look at us.”  But great in being a peaceful, vibrant community. We should let that stir our hearts; then, we find the energy to stand up and step out.

It was dropped in my heart years ago: prayer goes before change.

Let’s learn to work together by changing our approach when stepping out to get involved. We do that with prayer; then, we will see results that bring the outcome that Jesus has obtained for us; victory over darkness. 

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