"The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God,
you will not despise." Psalm 51:17, NIV
I felt pretty bad yesterday, just thinking of how I'd been feeling sorry for myself. I know I don't have it too bad. In fact, I am pretty sure that some of the people who make my life miserable on a regular basis probably wish they had some of what I have. Maybe they wish they had a loving, handsome, steadily-employed husband or good skin. Maybe they wish they could make what I make just working four days a week. Like a lot of other people, I am in debt & maybe eventually I will get out of it some day. I am making progress - very, very slow progress, but I am going in the right direction.
As for the neighbor who "needs" something all the time, I discussed this with my brother, who usually doesn't weigh the spiritual into his opinions. Still, what he said makes sense: "If you're giving her stuff all the time you're not really helping her. You're just making her more dependent." So I am not going to feel guilty if I can't give her something every time she calls & begs "pretty please." I may loan her a couple bucks for gas to go visit one of her kids, or take her to her sister's house a mile up the road once in a while, but she can get her cigarettes from someone else. Hopefully she won't send her relatives over here to slash my tires. If she does, I'll call the police.
As selfish as it may sound, I can't keep taking care of the world around me if I don't take better care of myself. I have stomach problems that really affect my life. I can't keep holding in my anger at the people who bother me, then turning it loose as rage against those I love. Does that make sense? Think the "kick the cat" story, about the boss who yells at the employee, who comes home & yells at his wife, who yells at their child, who kicks the cat. I can be tough & strong. I have to do this, for those I love if not for myself alone.
So after a day of broken dreams, I am already healing & getting stronger fast. Praise God!