The Rest of The Way Posts

COOLING MY OVERHEATED ENGINE
Friday, April 15, 2022 by Leona Choy

Would you believe, curbing my emotional impulsiveness is something with which I've struggled most of my life? I'm quite good at "jumping to conclusions" so I continue to need wait training. It has nothing to do with the pumping iron kind of weight training. Or calorie counting for weight control.

I tend too easily and quickly to vent my feelings. In this advanced calendar season of my life that habit seems to be well-ingrained. Do I assume that my matriarchal status gives me a right to be outspoken and to give advice even when it may not be welcome or called for? I admit to times when I want to complain to someone about what that person did that may not have pleased me or neglected to do something I expected. I could try to whitewash it and call it righteous indignation. Nevertheless, being too quick to speak is still a negative character trait. It needs to be confessed and repented of.

Since I wrongly take for granted that I'm usually right, I'm inclined to make it known. By nature, however, I’m not a confrontational person, especially not face-to-face. As a writer, I’d much rather put it on paper. That gives me a chance to craft my complaint, and state my case logically and carefully point by point as if I were in a court of law. Snail mail is far too slow these days. With the ease of email, I can spout off instantly while I'm still hot under the collar.

Oh, the trouble I’ve gotten into and the embarrassment I’ve suffered time and again by impulsively sending off a missive which in the end turns out to be a deadly missile when it reaches its destination! The dictionary tells me that a missile is “an object or weapon that is thrown, shot, or otherwise propelled to a target.” A message I quickly send-off in the heat of my emotions, especially with a backdrop of perception before I have all the facts, can be more lethal than a hand grenade. It has the potential to mortally wound a friendship or a relationship. It isn't a guided missile since I had not waited patiently to be guided by the Lord before I sent it.

God has had me in wait training most of my life in respect to my venting-and-sending written words too soon or speaking words prematurely. The latter is even more damaging since they were spontaneous and I can't retract them. In Proverbs, I read, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” And “Like apples of gold in settings of silver is a word spoken [by inference, written] in right circumstances.” In the book of James, the writer warns, “The tongue is a restless evil and full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father; and with it we curse men…from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing.”

I'm not advocating holding in my emotions. Totally suppressing them has pressure-cooker dangers. In the Psalms, David gave us a preemptive example to follow: “I will pour out my complaint before God; I declare my trouble before Him.” Ah, now we’re getting to the heart of the matter. Vent is a good four-letter word, but wait is its healthy counterpart.

Through long years of experience in making mistakes in this area of speaking or writing something hastily or rashly, I’ve found what works for me. However, sometimes I still come dangerously close to transgressing again. An occasion arose when I was really miffed. I felt that I had every right to complain to someone about an unfair situation that involved my feelings. I sat down at my sometimes overly-user-friendly computer and set about venting my feelings through my fingers on the keyboard with the full intention of sending off the email immediately to the person involved. I rapidly wrote two steamy pages. I spell-checked, outlined my points, underlined, cap-lettered for emphasis, and edited it several times until I was satisfied I had spoken my piece eloquently and presented my case flawlessly. Let the chips fall where they may—the person deserved every sentence.

I sat back and blew out my breath. Well, here it goes! But somehow I was held back from clicking SEND. An unseen but clearly felt hand seemed to restrain me. Perhaps it was my Guardian Angel. (He is probably exhausted and frustrated with his incredibly long and arduous life assignment to bring me to my senses.)

“Wait!” There was no mistaking the impression. “Be patient. Click SAVE instead.” Okay, I guess I could send it out after lunch. “That’s not all—pray for her. And pour out your complaint before God.”

Reluctantly I obeyed. I actually waited one day, two days. The emotional fire in my furnace cooled.

On the third day, my target person surprised me by emailing me. With genuine caring and warmth, she laid out an entirely different scenario for the situation between us that had precipitated my near boiler eruption. I had misunderstood, jumped to conclusions, and read between the lines when there was nothing there to read! Because of my impulsiveness, I could have lost a relationship that was precious and holy!

Venting is necessary to relieve my emotional pressure; holding in my feelings isn't healthy. Writing down my feelings is a good outlet, an escape valve, as long as I don’t send the missive immediately. Complaining is permitted if I do it to God alone. Waiting is always wise.

O Lord, please don’t give up on me. Keep me in your wait training class for as long as I need it. And reward my Guardian Angel with an extra slice of ANGEL FOOD cake for his coffee break at a “celestial STARbucks.” Time and again he has restrained me from doing or saying something that could have been more serious than egg on my face.

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Comments

Dot From Dan At 4/30/2022 1:02:11 PM

We all need this message to cool down and think before acting. I don't know how you come up with so many great topics!

Carol Hopfensperger From Denver At 4/18/2022 2:56:38 PM

This is such great advice! Years ago something happened and I couldn’t wait to call people and tell them how I had been wronged! A dear friend suggested that”Before I go to the phone, that I go to the throne.” It made a world of difference!

Linda Ann Fumea From FL At 4/16/2022 7:23:40 AM

Such good advice. I must confess, years ago in my 20s I sent off a letter to my father essentially blaming him for everything that had 'gone wrong' in my life. It was 'spot on' but not nicely said. Time passed, no response. Finally, my father spoke, he said, "Next time, wait three days."

Reply by: Leona Choy

Wise advice.

Joseph Sabounji From Toronto, ON At 4/16/2022 7:14:36 AM

Dear in Christ Leona: Greetings in Christ to you with extra special hug on this glorious EASTER Day. Thank you for being clear and to the point with your messages. May the Joy of EASTER fill your heart, home, and mission work in connecting with Friends via your meaningful, practical, Christ honori

Reply by: Leona Choy

Thank God for our friendship.

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3/7/2020

BOUND BY AN INVISIBLE THREAD
Leona Choy
3/4/2020

NOT SILENCED
Leona Choy
2/26/2020

BEING OWLISH ABOUT WISDOM
Leona Choy
2/24/2020

"In the beginning..." before GOOGLE
Leona Choy
2/22/2020

PULLED FROM THE BRINK
Leona Choy
2/20/2020

APPLE OF HIS EYE
Leona Choy
2/9/2020

SINGING HER WAY HOME
Leona Choy
1/31/2020

EATIN' SHORTBREAD
Leona Choy
1/24/2020

PLATFORM, PODIUM, PULPIT OR PEDESTAL?
Leona Choy
1/17/2020

BUCKET LIST AGAIN?
Leona Choy
1/12/2020

IN SEARCH OF A MAKEOVER
Leona Choy
12/31/2019

SEASONAL SAG
Leona Choy
12/30/2019

THE MYSTERY OF TIME
Leona Choy
12/28/2019

2020 MY RENEWED EAGLE YEAR
Leona Choy
12/26/2019

Post Surgery Report
Leona Choy
12/3/2019

SURGERY ENCORE
Leona Choy
11/23/2019

“You Have the Right to Remain Silent”
Leona Choy
10/31/2019

WHO IS SHAKING MY TREE?
Leona Choy
10/30/2019

WHO IS THE BOSS OF ME?
Leona Choy
10/15/2019

LORD, MOVE MY MOUNTAIN!
Leona Choy
10/13/2019

ANOTHER WAITING ROOM
Leona Choy
10/11/2019

DON'T BE SHEEPISH
Leona Choy
10/10/2019

THE VALUE OF SELF-TALK
Leona Choy
9/28/2019

LASER PRAYER
Leona Choy
9/27/2019

THANKS FOR THE MEMORY
Leona Choy
9/12/2019

CARRY ME, FATHER
Leona Choy
9/5/2019

MY PERSONAL SPIRITUAL WORKOUT
Leona Choy
9/4/2019

PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
Leona Choy
9/1/2019

Lessons from My Cup
Leona Choy
8/20/2019

STRAW & THE CAMEL'S BACK
Leona Choy
8/7/2019

BECOMING MORE "FRUITY"
Leona Choy
7/10/2019

CREATIVE ENCOUNTERS
Leona Choy
7/3/2019

PITCHING IT RIGHT
Leona Choy
6/30/2019

“WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU GROW UP?”
Leona Choy
6/25/2019

34580 and COUNTING
Leona Choy
6/18/2019

MOUNTAINS AND MOLEHILLS
Leona Choy
6/14/2019

CHEERLEADING
Leona Choy
6/6/2019

HANDS ON THE PLOW
Leona Choy
5/22/2019

WAITING FOR GRADUATION DAY
Leona Choy
5/17/2019

I THINK BOOKS
Leona Choy
5/13/2019

ONLY TALK WITH YOUR MOUTH FULL!
Leona Choy
5/4/2019

HO-HUM FAITH
Leona Choy
4/18/2019

BREATHTAKING THOUGHTS
Leona Choy
4/7/2019

TOO MUCH ON MY PLATE?
Leona Choy
3/31/2019

EARTH SUIT vs SPACE SUIT: Increasing Tension
Leona Choy
3/4/2019

AVOIDING A SPIRITUAL "OOPS!"
Leona Choy
3/1/2019

PURSUING WISDOM
Leona Choy
2/19/2019

A THORNY MATTER
Leona Choy
2/15/2019

A SOMEWHAT GRUMPY CHAT WITH GOD
Leona Choy
2/12/2019

A FISH STORY
Leona Choy
2/8/2019

LET'S EAT NOODLES TOGETHER!
Leona Choy
1/21/2019

SATISFIED--A SECRET TO SHARE
Leona Choy
1/11/2019

STILL RUNNING
Leona Choy
12/29/2018

RESISTANCE TO ASSISTANCE
Leona Choy
12/6/2018

CHALLENGE OF THE FOURTH QUARTER
Leona Choy
11/26/2018

KEEPING A TRADITION
Leona Choy
11/15/2018

PUBLISHING FUND PROGRESS
Leona Choy
11/5/2018

"GOING STEADY" WITH MY "SUGAR CANE"
Leona Choy
11/3/2018

A SHOUT-OUT FOR A NEW BUTTERFLY
Leona Choy
10/31/2018

THANKSGIVING IN OCTOBER
Leona Choy
10/7/2018

REPEAT OFFENDERS
Leona Choy
9/30/2018

SHINING WHEN YOUR BATTERY IS LOW
Leona Choy
9/21/2018

I DESERVE IT...DESERVE IT NOT....
Leona Choy
9/13/2018

WHAT'S IN A NAME?
Leona Choy
9/10/2018

WAITING FOR GOD'S DUE TIME
Leona Choy
9/3/2018

STONES AND COVERUPS AND HOLY EARS
Leona Choy
8/31/2018

IT'S ALL ABOUT SHOES
Leona Choy
8/29/2018

THE HOLY SPIRIT IS MY CELL TOWER
Leona Choy
8/27/2018

REJUVENATION GOD'S WAY
Leona Choy
8/17/2018

STUCK IN THE MUD?
Leona Choy
8/13/2018

TWINKLE TWINKLE LITTLE STAR
Leona Choy
8/8/2018

WHEN'S A GOOD TIME TO "EXULT"?
Leona Choy
7/30/2018

Survey For the Calendar-Challenged
Leona Choy
7/25/2018

Destiny Decisions
Leona Choy
7/19/2018

BEDROOM SLIPPERS OR HIKING BOOTS?
Leona Choy
7/18/2018

Hurrah for the Prepper Bridesmaids!
Leona Choy
7/13/2018

THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS?
Leona Choy
7/10/2018

BARNACLES
Leona Choy
6/5/2018