I have been catching up on last season of The Voice and decided to watch one episode before I went to bed. At the very end of the episode as Taylor John Williams was getting ready for his song, Qwen asked him what line he related to the most. He responded with “stuck in the middle with you” because when his parents went through a divorce and he spent most of his time with his grandmother. I immediately thought of the song differently. I don’t relate to his story specifically because my parents just celebrated the 30th anniversary of their first date. I do, however, relate to the line of the song that he did. Life is hard and messy sometimes. I get stuck in the middle and I can’t seem to fix any of it. Which is a huge problem for me because I am a fixer, it’s what I do. I evaluate all sides of the problem and then get to the root of it and fix it. I was just talking to my dad and my person about this the other day. I just want to make things better, but there isn’t anything I can do sometimes. This week is one of those times. I have no control over the situation. I’m not alone though. You’re here with me. No matter what I’m facing or what I’m going through.
Proverbs 29:11 says: A fool always loses his temper, But a wise man holds it back. Other translations say: Fools vent their anger, but the wise quietly hold it back. Growing up in the South, we don’t hide our crazy, we put it on the front porch and display it for all the neighbors. Then the neighbors run and tell everybody down the block. I thought this type of stuff was just while we were in middle and high school and that at some point we were supposed to grow out of it. Truth is, we don’t. I realized in college, there is drama all the way from childhood to the very end. I’ve learned that I don’t have to participate though. I don’t have to listen to gossip. I don’t have to be actively involved in the mess. There are always going to be 15 sides to every story and there is never going to be a solution that makes everyone happy. There are always going to be people that make mountains out of mow-hills. There are always going to be people stirring the pot and riling things up. There are always going to be people pointing fingers and dodging the blame. There are always going to be people rooting for you to fail.
“Our reaction to a situation literally has the power to change the situation itself.” James 1:19 says: This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger. I’ve seen people act out of anger a lot and I just don’t think it helps anything. It doesn’t fix the issue, it just adds to it. “A moment of patience in a moment of anger saves you a hundred moments of regret.” I’ve also seen people literally talk themselves into a brick wall. I’ve done it a couple of times myself. I’ve learned that the fastest answer isn’t always the right one. “Direction is so much more important than speed. Many are going nowhere fast.” There’s this quote that says: “The quieter you become, the more you can hear.” Ok, You’ve got me. I’m ready to listen.
So, this is my prayer today. I pray that I stop talking and start listening. I pray that I keep learning to slow down and follow your direction. I pray that I continue to work on my reaction. I pray that I keep coming to you. I pray that I give it all to you. Lord, I can’t handle this on my own. Where I am weak, you are strong. Where I am not enough, you are more than enough. Lord, I’m bringing it all to you. Lord, prepare my heart. I pray that you change me. I pray that you move me. I pray that you guide me. I pray that you direct me. Thank you for being with me through it all. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.