As with all things in this world, disappointments happen. I refer, in part, to my aforementioned VACATION! It was somewhat restful in that I got to stay home, but for 3 days I spent stressing over the phone and computer, trying to rectify with the Department of Veteran’s Affairs that my mother does in fact deserve her benefits, which have been temporarily suspended. It’s a long story, and I will spare you all the gory details, but it was nonetheless a bit stressful. I have copied blank and completed forms to my computer for future reference, made hard copies to send to the care home for their consideration, filled out forms I’d never filled out before, and had a hard time keeping track of all the papers on top of my desk. A nightmare to be sure, but I suppose it could have been worse. Fortunately, I discovered during my hours on the phone, waiting for a human to answer, that I have a few contacts in the city where my mom lives that have experience with this and can assist, should the need arise.
Prompted to reread the previous post, perhaps to remember why I was on vacation, I was struck by how applicable the last part was, the Scripture. It has amazed me throughout my years as a Christian that the whole world can be a jumble, full of chaos and fear, and yet when God’s Word enters the picture, all the turmoil fades away and my peace returns. It really is true that when Jesus enters the room, the devil, fear, anxiety, confusion, and everything else negative has to flee. He is Peace personified. He brings with Him comfort, solace and a sense of well-being to any environment that is fraught with negative or contentious emotion.
Speaking of contention, recently, in fact at the beginning of my vacation, I managed to get myself into the middle of a conversation on a social media site with a friend, someone who shares in loving Jesus as I do, but politically has diametrically opposing viewpoints. Now, I usually know better than to get into these conversations, but what I shared was at the beginning of the thread and not such a big deal, until…..all of her friends with her same view point jumped in to give their two cents worth of advice and negative input. Needless to say, my blood began to boil and it was all I could do to keep my fingers from writing what my tongue wanted to say. My friend jumped in at the last and saved the day by calling truce and the friends all went away thinking “Boy, we sure told her!!!! Boy, oh boy!!
It was a few days later that I read a conservative site’s conversation thread where I saw that my friend had made a comment, seemingly simple and straightforward, and she was “attacked” by those folks whose view points are similar to mine. It was an interesting comment as to the division we have been seeing in our nation and how our very peace is coming under attack. And WE LET IT HAPPEN by giving the enemy a foothold when we get into discussions/arguments that will never go anywhere but to divide us further. We play right into the enemy’s hands. In an effort to “educate” the readers, we just end up confirming to them they are right because we’re so stupid, calling names, and no one is benefitting except the enemy of our souls who walks off laughing at our stupidity for getting involved in the conversation to begin with!
I know, I know. It is very frustrating to let things go when you know you are right and they need to know they are wrong so they can start thinking right again after you tell them what you know. But, trust me. If we don’t proceed with love and a lot of prayer, nobody is going to change their mind to your way of thinking! Oftentimes we speak before we pray but we must approach the Throne first, in my opinion, before entering into these social media forums, if we should even do it at all.
I have gotten into enough of those conversations, with friends and with strangers, to know that it is not worth the peace I lose to take that risk. It’s not Christ like. Arguing my point of view is not what Jesus has called me to do, even though it makes my “flesh” feel good to knock somebody out on social media sometimes. And I have to say, I’m usually the first one to back out of the conversation because I feel convicted and know I shouldn’t have been in it to begin with. That really is frustrating!!!! But is it truly pleasing to the Lord? Am I sowing seeds of love, hope, joy? Am I furthering the cause of Christ? Will souls be won into the Kingdom of Heaven because of my part in the conversation? I don’t think so. And maybe those are questions we should ask BEFORE we enter these threads of conversation. How can I uplift the Name of Jesus and His Love to those I may speak to on this site?
Based on my experiences with these things over the years, I can’t say I won’t ever get involved in them again, but maybe I’ll have a little more insight, and hopefully go into them more prayerfully next time. They can be treacherous depending on the subject matter, but if we keep Jesus at the forefront, waiting on Him to give us the words to say, or be obedient if He tells us to not get involved at all, we will go a long way towards keeping our peace. And that, keeping my peace in this crazy world, is worth just about everything!