24 January 2015

Change It Or Channel It

(This entry is based on an email that I received recently from Rick Warren)

Yes, I know how I feel about a given situation often affects how I react to it. And many folks keep telling me that, in fact, it's all up to me. They tell me that I have a choice about how I feel. The problem is that they don't explain do it very well. They say - "like it or lump it". Which immediately switches me off... do they think I want to feel this way? That I like to feel bad? Sure, that leaves me with only one option: lump it, put up with it. :(

However, I like the email that I got recently, which explains it in a subtlely different way.

You either change it, or you channel it.

Sometimes you need to change what you’re feeling. And that's because raw emotions are so powerful, so potentially destructive, so damaging to some situations, that you're going to have to change it if you want to survive. Perhaps you are carrying around bitterness for something that happened years ago? You shouldn't. Because who is it hurting? Yourself - and in many occasions, only yourself. Everyone else may have forgotten it, which means you're the only one still keeping this alive. Christians are encouraged to ask ourselves "How would Jesus feel in this situation? Would He get annoyed? Would He be fearful?"

Sometimes you need to channel what you’re feeling. Some emotions or griefs are far too much to bear - however, we can decide to channel that grief for good - use that pain to help other people. That's bringing a good thing out of a bad thing. You are angry about an injustice? Write a letter, start a campaign, help someone who has been a victim. Turn this negative into a positive. Listen carefully - I'm not saying that you should be happy about it. I am saying that you need to find a way to find a positive from it. Name it, challenge it, channel it, use it for good.

If you can't change it, channel it.
If you can't channel it, change it.

Philippians 2:5 (TLB)
“Your attitude should be the kind that was shown us by Jesus Christ.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Coin,

I see your quandry. ''Like it or lump it'' is just so crass and pointless.

Here's mine. If I have to change, what was the point in being who I am/was to begin with? This only makes me feel worse.

I feel for you, too.

The Artful Dodger.