My feelings were hurt. I just couldn't seem to let go of the hurtful comment. I kept turning it over and over in my mind and the more I thought about it, the more sullen I became. I was getting more and more quiet as the day progressed and I just couldn't seem to stop myself.
You see, earlier in the day, someone had made a comment to me and it had hurt my feeligs. This person did not intend to hurt me. It was nothing malicious, but it still hurt. Ever since that moment, I kept thinking about the comment and how much it hurt me.
Finally, I asked God, "What should I do? I keep thinking about this hurtful comment. I keep playing it over in my head. I can't seem to let go of it. Why do I keep reminding myself of this pain?"
God's reply was simple. He said, "You don't have to."
There have been a few times in my life when I've known the Lord is speaking to me. His voice rings clearly in my head and in my heart. I usually feel the Lord's leading in my life, but this is different. When God talks to me this way, I have a feeling throughout my spirit that is like electricity. The other thing that always comes with His quiet comments to my soul is scripture. When He speaks, He lays a scripture on my heart that affirms His words. This way, I REALLY know it's Him.
This time was no different, I cried out in my heart asking God how to stop thinking about this offense and He replied, "You don't have to (think about it)." Then He reminded me of Phillipians 4:8:
Finally, bretheren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
It was so simple, and yet to my broken spirit, it was so profound! Was this offensive comment true? No. Was it honest? No. Was it just, pure or lovely? No. No. And no. So why did I continually turn it over in my brain looking at it from every angle, contemplating it, and, yes, obsessing over it?
I determined to shut that thought down. I focused on anything good that had happened that day. And if that was not enough I focused on anything good that had happened that week! And then I truly focused on the good, good God who took the time to speak to me and calm my chaotic mind.
I don't HAVE to think about the negative, offensive, or unkind things. I don't HAVE to give them any more thought or energy from my mind. I have a test for what to think about now. I have a checklist. If I find myself thinking about one incident or comment, I can measure it against Phillipians 4:8. Is it truth? Is it pure? Is it lovely?
I'm committing to think about all those things that are of good report and virtue. If I can give praise for it, I will think about it. I'm determined to take all of my thoughts captive in this way. (II Corinthians 10:5)
I can't say that all of my days will be "sullen-free", but I can say that those sullen moments will be few and far-between. I've got the tools to keep myself from obsessing over hurtful words. Isn't it great that we worship a God who gives us such good gifts?