Whispers to a Hot Minute

A hot minute about anger.

This morning I was angered by a social media post by a friend. This post, without a doubt, did harm. That in itself causes anger. This post, without a doubt, did harm to a mutual friend. That causes more and deeper anger.

And the reality is, social media posts can cause us anger just about every minute of the day, giving us the opportunity to feel like the whole day is one hot minute. These posts don’t necessarily have to be by people we know. Unfortunately, we are leered into getting hot from posts by people we don’t even know. We can believe the lie that we know their intentions, but reality is that’s impossible.

This morning, I had the same impulse most of us do. “Why don’t I point out the harm and basically put my friend in his place?” Thankfully, I refrained. Then my hotness said, “Well, sure, don’t put it out there for everybody to see. Just send him a private message.” Very tempting, but thankfully I still refrained. So what did I do? I went for a run.

So let me explain. Rarely do I run at 1PM. And rarely is going for a run a solution. But I know myself enough to know that one way to keep me from doing something stupid is to do something good. And some of my best thinking is while I’m running.

Sure enough, the hot minute subsided and the angry rebuttal left the front of my mind. Some call that regulation or de-escalation. In spiritual terms, I’d say it’s dropping your ego in order to let God have a say.

So here are God’s whispers while on my run:

  • “One person’s lack of turning their cheek doesn’t give you the right to do the same.”
  • “A fool is better left alone. I don’t need your help setting them straight.”
  • “Offer forgiveness rather than advice or judgment.”
  • “Consider how Jesus approached the harm Judas created.”

And that’s how I’ll be able to go to sleep tonight. Listening and following the whispers cooling my hot minute.

Photo by Aarón Blanco Tejedor on Unsplash

31 Proverbs Highlights: #24-Enough with the Agitation

(A simple series highlighting verses from each chapter of the book of Proverbs)

Don’t be agitated by evildoers, and don’t envy the wicked. (‭Proverbs‬ ‭24‬:‭19‬ HCSB)

Social Media is full of agitation. I get agitated by all the agitation, you know what I mean?

So why do we allow ourselves to get so agitated? Yes, people do crazy things. Yes, we don’t understand how people get by with their actions. Yes, we will never agree totally with others. But must we live in such an agitated state?

Is it possible we’ve gotten so agitated by what we see in others because we’ve forgotten the evil that resides in our own hearts? We’ve gotten so used to excusing the person in the mirror that actually given enough power and freedom is capable of just as much wickedness.

This proverb reminds me to look at my own heart. See myself as God sees me. Worry about my own evil and wickedness rather than focus on someone else’s. Resist the agitation of pointing out the sins of others and let God deal with them. Enough with the agitation.

Hate Rising

Tonight a report on CBS documented how several social media hate groups can be linked to the killers in Dallas, Charleston, and San Bernardino. This piece made me wonder what is the cause in the apparent rise in hate. Could it be in these thoughts/beliefs/messages:

  • “You are the center of your universe”
  • “Your wants trump other’s”
  • “Your rights trump other’s”
  • “Your thoughts/opinions/beliefs trump other’s”
  • “Your wounds trump other’s”
  • “Empathy only matters when you need it”

Are these messages directly stated by most of us? No. Are they often supported by our actions? Yes.

The main concern in each of these messages is the focus on you. What about God? What about fellow humans?

Is it possible the rise in hate is equal to the rise in thinking too much about ourselves? God warns us of the dangers of thinking too highly of ourselves (Romans 12).

Suggestion: the next time you sense hate rising in you, ask yourself what is the root of the emotion. You might find it in an unexpected place. And you might find it has an easier fix than you thought. 

Down to the Rise!