Monday, 21 October 2013

God Chooses Uncomfortable but Effective Ways to Change Me

Change begins with me! That’s what they say, but you know, it’s really OTHER people who need to change. It’s because they’re so annoying. And most of the time, they don’t even know it!

Right? You with me?

Actually, God knows what a self-centred, full of myself brat I am, so He tried to get me to change, using that most useful and blunt instrument (pun intended): my family.

“Sue,” my mother told me, “You need to talk less and listen more. Sometime you come across too strong.”

“What!” I replied, offended. “I can’t help it if I’m passionate about some things.”

“Yes, but you can overwhelm people with TOO MUCH. You have a lot going on in your head, but you need to give other people a chance to talk.”

“Hmmph!” I replied and stalked off.

My sister would throw me annoyed stares sometimes when I started off. Once she told me, “It feels like you’re always preaching at me.” I was really hurt. “I’m just thinking aloud. I thought I could share what I was thinking with you at least. So what if I’m always thinking about finer points of theology?”

Once we were talking about someone who talks too much, and who people feel like backing away from, and my mum told me, “Maybe that’s how people feel around you sometimes.”

Ouch. That might have made me cry.

Still, mostly my family was just insensitive and hurtful. It wasn't really my problem. Maybe I talked a lot, but at least I talked about things worth talking about. And anyway my personality type includes ‘iNtuition’ which means I live in my head a lot, so technically it’s not really my fault.

God apparently needed a more heavy-duty instrument.

I once met someone to whom I wanted to say ALL THE SAME THINGS. She was insensitive. She was overpowering. She would dominate conversations. She would grab a conversation and turn it into a monologue or a diatribe. People really did want to run away from her. (And did, quite often.) There was no communication at all. It would just be her DRIVING home some point or the other. She was so caught up in her own thoughts, and trying to prove that she was right, that it was like she was almost unaware of anyone else around her, except as an audience. She would look for the smallest excuse for a controversy, and then JUMP in and take over the conversation. I was SO annoyed and frustrated and upset. I might have even said some direct and perhaps too pointed words of correction.

But guess what? It made me take a good look at myself... and promise I would NEVER do that to anyone ever again. I almost promised that I would never talk theology again, and stick with conversations about how the monsoons have been so unpredictable, how Gravity freaked everyone out including Sandra Bullock, and how much oil bais use when they cook. (I hear that’s what other people talk about.)

Actually, I didn't go that far. But I did decide that my mum had a point, and that I was going to (try anyway to) be a LOT more sensitive to other people in a conversation. You know, by taking a pause, and saying “What do YOU think?” every now and again, and then really listening to the answer.

 Yeah, painful, but effective.


  1. We're all works in progress. Yes, God definitely does use some drastic means to get to us sometimes--but it's all out of love. Whatever it takes to finally get through to us.

    1. Yes, that's what makes the correction palatable.. He's just a Dad who wants what's best for me.

  2. I experience much of the same! We need to pray for each other! Us firehydrants need to figure out how to leak just a little water at a time lol

    1. True that! I like the firehydrant analogy :-)

  3. I guess i'm more like your friend! Sad but true! I've tried to change myself but all i do is keep mum when i come across such situations and if keeping mum hasn't really contained the issue and it is still on, then i blow off! Probably because i think / feel too much about a certain point and i want the other person understand my point of view! I used to blow off every single day but now i am rehabilitated and blow off once per semester but now politely. Thats an achievement for me. But working my way through to eliminate the two per annum target! A KPI which has improved and is still in progress. The only thing that has got me down is Jesus! The day i say that i can take care of myself and give Jesus a vacation, i blow off. Now-a-days, i keep the bible handy and if i feel that i am pushed to blow off, i pray that God be in-charge and not me. It has helped a lot and its improving too! Glad!