May 23, 2023
Recently our son Tyler and his wife Meg were coming to our house for Mother’s Day weekend. When I heard that they were coming I immediately planned a fishing trip for Tyler and I as that is what we usually do when he comes. When I told Michelle about it, I looked at her and it was like I had emotionally slapped her. She was not as mad as she was hurt.
She told me that this was Mother’s Day and that she had planned for Tyler and Meg to spend some time with her – not just Tyler spending time fishing with me. When she said this, I immediately could see why she felt emotionally slapped. I felt ashamed for being so selfish. Tyler and I love to hunt and fish together and that is what we usually do when he comes to see us. So, without thinking about Michelle’s feelings I just planned a fishing trip. What a jerk.
I apologized to Michelle and told her that I wasn’t thinking. Tyler and Meg came and we had a wonderful weekend together. But I still remember the look on Michelle’s face when she was emotionally slapped. We must remember that words and actions can emotionally slap someone with a pain that hurts more than a physical slap. The slap to the heart is worse and leaves deeper scars than a physical slap. When you give a physical slap, it also is an emotional slap.
The thought has never crossed my mind to try and physically slap Michelle. So I am praying and asking God to help me be more sensitive to her feelings so as to not emotionally slap her. This means being intentional in thinking about her and her feelings and plans and less about me and what I selfishly think and plan.
The Bible tells us that we must die to ourselves in order for Jesus to live inside of us and through us. When we do die to ourselves and Jesus lives inside of us, we will allow His love to shine through us to others. That means that we should follow Romans 12:3 that says that a person should not think of himself more highly than he ought to think but think of others.
So let’s all strive to not emotionally slap anyone. We can do this unintentionally but the pain is still there. So join me in trying to be more sensitive and less selfish. Michelle graciously forgave me and even went on a trip to see the pond that Tyler and I would have fished in.
In love with Jesus – Gary Mimbs