Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Refusing to Fight or Flee

As part of the inevitable give-and-take of church politics, I sent an email carefully crafted to be polite and conciliatory, while expressing my disagreement with a decision made. This morning I received a response which evokes two reactions:

1. Rationally, I wash my hands of the issue, acknowledge that I did my best, and accept a decision I dislike, but which is not a matter of faith and morals, obediently and do my best to cooperate with what I'm asked to do, while reading the more ambiguous passages in a charitable light.

2. Physically, my body has gone into an anxious fight-or-flight reaction. I feel off my feed, my coffee is making my stomach churn, I'm jittery and nervy.

I can't help how my body responds, but I'm trying to account for it in my interactions this morning, so I don't transfer my frustration to the kids.

--The first thing this requires is prayer, lots of it, and remembering to pray before I open my mouth or physically react to anything.

-- I have to intentionally not snap at the little boys for doing mildly frustrating things that I usually can ignore.

-- I can choose to let the older girls sleep a little later so I can process in some peace, rather than getting irritated because people aren't out of bed yet.

-- I can put off a less essential, non-time-specific business call that I need to make some time this morning.

-- I can join my lack of appetite to Lenten fasting.

None of these things make the physical reaction go away, but hopefully they'll help me regulate in time without making innocent people around me feel upset. And, ideally, it imitates Christ on the cross -- taking a particular suffering into my own body and letting it stop there.

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