Wednesday, February 4, 2015

God Bless That Man!

I used to be a very nasty driver. If someone cut me off, I'd give him the one-finger wave and call him a choice name that cannot be repeated in this holy blog. 
photo credit
Then I had kids. And met Jesus in a personal way.

I couldn't very well teach them these things, could I? 
I couldn't very well say and do these things and still please God, could I?

But it was so hard to break that habit, and I really wanted to let everyone else know how stupid they were. Plus, it made me feel better to vent my anger and frustration.

But it was wrong on so many levels.

Then I read in Romans 12 (the "love" chapter):


Bless those who persecute you. Bless and do not curse. (v12)

It was the word, "curse" that caught my eye, because at the time, I was being convicted of how my truck driver mouth displeased and offended God.

Okay, so maybe these drivers weren't exactly persecuting me, but they sure were ticking me off (which is not exactly the word I would have chosen at that time).

I really wanted to do right by God, but I was having such a difficult time changing!

Well, I thought, I could bless these idiots stupid drivers other drivers who aggravate annoy me do things that cause me to lose my temper instead of cursing them.

Huh.

So I decided to try it.


It wasn't long before my whole driving demeanor changed. People didn't annoy me so much anymore. And I genuinely felt to bless the person as they went along their merry way, oblivious to the fact that they just did something that almost caused me to have a fatal accident.

The best part was when I heard my kids in the back seat say, "God bless that man!" when they didn't hear me say it right away, or saw me losing my resolve...or sometimes, before I even had a chance! And I had to laugh.

Many years have passed since then. My children are now adults. I wish I could say that they have kept that tradition, but I have been a passenger with both. One typically says nothing about other drivers; the other...well...that one has a ways to go with the whole blessing/cursing thing.

As for me?

I typically have a lot more patience driving these days. Maybe it's age. Maybe it's because I'm just not in a hurry to get anywhere anymore. Maybe I just realize that we all do dumb stuff when we drive (Sometimes I'll do something dumb, and afterwards, I'll say, "Oh, I'm sorry!" as if the other driver can hear me!). Most of the time, I realize that drivers are not intentionally singling me out. 

Mostly, it's just not worth my time to become offended at things anymore, on the road and off. I've learned to be forgiving and not take things personally. And my life is richer and more peaceful for it.

However...I wonder if it's time to get back to that which started it all...blessing instead of cursing. I'm not doing either. But maybe it's time I start blessing again.

You may want to try it. It diffuses the anger and kind of makes you chuckle!

"God bless that man."

Blessings Along the Path,
Mare

Sharing this post with Coffee For Your Heart, Wedded Wednesday, A Little R&R, Word-Filled Wednesday, Thought Provoking Thursday, Blessing Counters, Faith Filled Friday, Grace-Truth, The Weekend Brew, Sunday Stillness, Good Morning Monday, Playdates With God, Sharing His Beauty, Testimony Tuesday, Unite






26 comments:

  1. Hi Mary! Visiting from Holley's blog today :) Great post! I find it easy to become frustrated with others and allow my emotion to take over. Like you said, it is a conscience choice to stop, process and think about how we will react in times of difficulty.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I can relate. My aha moment of no more honking and ranting and raving towards slow drivers came when I followed that slow granny into our church parking lot. Well, actually I didn't follow. When I realized I had been honking and throwing my hands up at one of our church members I decided it might be best to keep on driving. Needless to say I was a little late to church that day. I am glad to say I've grown up a bit since then and don't show my annoyance so quickly anymore.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh Melody, you're too much! I know someone else who did that-except it was at the YMCA, where she worked. Church though...I would have kept on driving too. But I'll bet she recognized your car and played dumb haha. Thanks for the morning chuckle!

      Delete
  3. Walking with Christ means a whole lot of changes occur (or should occur! :) in our lives... little and big.... and seeing how our actions affect/teach our children can sure be an eye-opener to what our behavior really looks like. Thank you for the post. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The wonderful thing about the changes that occur in our lives when we begin to follow Christ, is that they often happen without our really realizing it...my truck driver mouth, for instance. I couldn't change it and didn't want to, but when I started walking with Christ, I found that when I did curse/swear, I had an inner conviction of how it hurt God to hear that and gradually it changed. That's the amazing thing about grace! Thanks for stopping by

      Delete
  4. My husband and I use to have terrible driving behaviors especially when it came to the not so polite drivers in the world. I now have become more calm, pray that the other drivers' impatience doesn't inflict harm on others, and move on. I can't say the same for my husband, haha, but it will come with time.

    I found your post at A Little R&R linky party!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's the extra step-praying that the driver doesn't inflict harm on others, because usually stupid, oops, I mean, drivers who do stupid things on the road usually cause the accidents rather than have them. Thanks for popping over from A Little R&R

      Delete
  5. Road rage something we have all suffered from but with kids in the car it is really something to think about. You have made me look at it from a different way, thanks for sharing this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad I could pass on some hard-learned wisdom! Thanks for visting

      Delete
  6. I really like that idea, Mary. "Blessing" instead of cursing! I'm an impatient driver but never brought out the arsenal of curse words that most rely on in those times. But even if I didn't/don't say a particular "curse word," I'm still cursing them in my heart when I let them get to me. I do think there's some kind of energy that rises to the surface when we are cut off or someone simply does something stupid or careless. But using that "energy" I feel to "bless them" and pray for them sounds a whole lot more profitable for me and that person's heart as well. Thanks for being so frank and authentic, sweet Mary! It's a refreshing time whenever I visit your place. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Beth! I think that energy is "the words of our heart" that I blogged about last week or so. Those words that want to come out, the ones that we think actually originate in our hearts (at least that's my belief...it's not a proven fact). So, if we can cut it off at the pass, and try to think on things that are good, pure, lovely, right, true and noble...we will see a change in our own hearts and it will be easy to overlook the offense.

      Delete
  7. Bless you for bring this truth out into the open. When we obey God's word He has a way of showing us that His way is always the right way. Bless your pea picken heart....lol I used this at work in the Army. I came in the Army when there were way more men than women - it was the Women's Army Corps after all. I was one of the first women sent to a combat arms unit in 1973 - the 3d Brigade, 3d Armored Division in Germany. I can't even go there when it came to comments like "this man's army." I'm stronger for it and learned a valuable lesson in the power of blessing. Yours - as always - in Him ~Chris~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So that's where you got your Chutzpah, Chris! Glad to have you back with us (us meaning the collective bloggers)!

      Delete
  8. Enjoyed your post. I apologize to other drivers too--as if... Ha, it's a very good thing we cannot hear one another in our cars. Blessings today from your linky neighbor at Coffee for Your Heart.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ginger. I just visited your site. Love it!

      Delete
  9. I don't get road rage too often, but I will have to try that method! I started praying for people who treated me badly last year, and boy does that make a difference!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I loved your transparency and how you shared how you reacted to other drivers in the past and how you bless them now. What an encouragement this is to other moms. I hope your children come a long way in this area...for the one who struggles in this. Some of my children are not there yet either.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love this Mary! "God bless that man!" It's awesome. I became more patient when I decided to imagine a bad driver being distracted by some struggle. I told myself I had no idea what they're going through. I like yours better!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for sharing. I have been a victim of someone else's road rage and it was not very pleasant. "God bless the man." is a good idea.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Thank you all for reading and commenting. I like to reply to each individual comment, but my blog keeps duplicating every single comment I make and I don't know how to fix it other than deleting one, which is time consuming! But I do appreciate each one of you taking the time to read!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Oh I get this, maybe too well. Sometimes it takes our kids to teach us that our bad habits can be made better in order to be a good role model for them. Thank you for the reminder of blessing others instead of cursing. Love having you link up at The Weekend Brew.

    ReplyDelete
  15. The next time I am angry I will try this. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Blessing instead of cursing. This message always preaches! I need to hear it often. Today I'm getting frustrated with some who are so intolerant, but even they need my blessing, not my cursing. Thanks for sharing this, Mary.

    ReplyDelete
  17. This is a great post and a great testimony as to how God changed your heart and your mouth. Thank you for being so open and honest with us and sharing at Good Morning Mondays. Blessings

    ReplyDelete