When I’m under pressure, what I truly am–not necessarily what I advertise to be–comes out.
I discover this almost every day. This morning I went to a quarry to pick out rocks for my garden. My thumb got pinched by a rock, and something came out. It wasn’t flowery. Last night I fell asleep soundly and someone came in an turned on a bright light. Once again something came out, and let’s just say it wasn’t affirming.
My default response to stress is generally anger and fear. These two vices take turns responding under pressure, and often they are directly linked. This is the human problem. What am I going to do about it? I would prefer to live a life of peace, joy, and love under pressure. I cannot attain those virtues by exerting will power. I’ve tried and failed. I’m doomed unless I intentionally decide to transform my mind. This process of spiritual transformation is what Jesus talked about in the Sermon on the Mount. It is what Paul discusses in Romans 8 and 12. Jesus said that the mark of a true disciple is love. In other words, when you squeeze a disciple, love comes out. The first step in becoming a disciple is a desire to desire to live my life like Jesus would. Let’s express this desire, and ask God to change our character to look like one who truly follows Him.
I desire to become a true disciple, one who reacts out of love naturally and sincerely, even under pressure. Forgive me for the many times I fail. Renew my mind through your Word. Teach me how to become a follower who willingly and routinely obeys your ways.