Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Tuesday's Featured: Handling Frustration

[Authored by Julie Gernand]

MAN! Have you ever been so frustrated you just DIDN’T know what to do?

Over the past few weeks I have found myself becoming easily frustrated over things that in the long run are justifiably insignificant. I have become annoyed with other drivers on the highway, been angry with myself for over-scheduling my activities, and I have even snapped at my cat for meowing too much.

I don’t know about you, but I need to take a serious look at what the Bible has to say about handling frustrating, stressful situations.

Pastor Rick Warren’s online devotional* lists five awesome things to remember when such times arise:

"You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you." 
(Isaiah 26:3 NIV)

ONE: Ask yourself, "Did I cause it?" The Bible says, "A man reaps what he sows" (Galatians 6:7b NIV). We are frustrated by many things in life because we bring them on ourselves.

TWO: Ask yourself, "What can I learn from it?" Romans 8:28 says, "In all things God works for the good of those who love him." There are many bad things in the world, but all things work together. God can even take the negative and turn it into a positive if we let him. Use irritation as an opportunity to become more like Christ.

THREE: Thank God in the situation. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, "Give thanks in all circumstances." You don't have to be thankful for a bad situation, but you can be thankful IN a bad situation. Frustration may be a blessing in disguise.

FOUR: Turn the frustration into a funny, humorous event. The Bible says, "A cheerful heart is good medicine" (Proverbs 17:22). A sense of humor is God's antidote for anger and frustration.

FIVE: Ask God to fill you with his love. Why? Because 1 Corinthians 13:5 says, "[Love] is not easily angered." Love is self-giving, not self-serving. We get irritated because we think everyone and everything has to revolve around us. Love concentrates on the other person.

Ooo. Did you read that last sentence?

Read it again.

“We think everyone and everything has to revolve around us”. Wow.

Perhaps frustration is often self-centeredness rearing its ugly head. A way that our pride bubbles over and explodes.

Rick Warren concludes his devotional with this reminder:
“Jesus faced constant frustrations, but he never got irritated. He always made time for people. We get so preoccupied with our own things that we forget that people are the priority in life.”

Meditate on these thoughts today!

How have you handled frustrations? Looking back on those times, are there ways you could have been more loving to others in such a situation?

*Above excerpts taken from Daily Hope with Rick Warren
Posted Sun June 10, 2012 by Rick Warren

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