“Watchout!” I jumped back as a little boy careened backward and tried to kick a bouncing football. Annoyance bubbled up inside me, as I looked at the spreading coffee stain on my new cream jacket. Fortunately, I didn’t have time to say anything to the child, as he raced off after the ball, oblivious to the minor accident he had caused.
“Why doesn’t someone keep those kids under control,” I muttered, sounding like my grandmother many years ago.
Later, I wondered why I had been so reactionary. After all, he was just a little child playing ball. He didn’t intend harm.
Jesus once warned his disciples that what came out of their mouths, the words they spoke, actually came from their hearts. Sure enough, I hadn’t given any thought to my reactions. They just spilled out, much like that coffee. If annoyance came out, that annoyance must have been inside me.
In Colossians 1:1, Paul says, “May you be filled with joy.” (NLT) If I’m full of joy, then when I’m knocked off balance, joy will spill out. If my heart is full of love, when a person or incident bumps me out of my comfort zone, I will react in love.
I resolved to be more careful with what I put into my heart in the future. I wanted to have a cup that overflowed with positive emotions. I wanted a cup full of joy.
Let's Pray: Loving Father, forgive me for the times my cup has overflowed in harmful ways. Please show me how to take in emotions that will bring healing and blessing to those around me, even when I’m knocked off balance.
Over to You: What emotion will you take in today?
SHIRLEY CORDER lives on the coast in South Africa with her husband, Rob. Her book, Strength Renewed: Meditations for your Journey through Breast Cancer contains 90 meditations based on her time in the cancer valley and can be obtained from bookstores or online stores.
Woman drinking coffee: Image courtesy of Dundee Photographics at FreeDigitalPhotos.net