Thursday, March 17, 2016

Anger, Part 2

... continued from March 10...

The next day I tried not to look across the street while I gardened. I hoped the dog would stay home.  At the sound of a truck coming up my driveway I looked up. It was my neighbor. 

My shoulders sagged. My chin dropped while I expelled a big sigh. I really didn't want to pick up where we'd let off. And I was quite defensive. 

He climbed out of the truck and handed me a bag. "I replaced your husband's gloves. I hope they're the right size."

"Well, thank you."

"I want to apologize for the way I talked to you last night. I feel real bad about it. Nobody deserves to be treated that way." He went on to explain that it's been a bad night. They'd had sad family news. 

"Thank you for the apology. In fact, it's an answer to my prayer. I really appreciate your coming over." I reached out and offered my hand. I felt myself get teary.

We shook firmly. "Thank you for forgiving me. " He was a little teary too. 

We then went on to resolve our difference of opinion. 

When he climbed in the cab and left, I considered that we were much better neighbors than we'd been before. 

I'll keep praying for him because I've found that anger has to be controlled or it becomes a habit of mind. An irritable person can find plenty to dislike about other fallible people. 

In this case I believe God did change the neighbor's heart. It encouraged me to see his humility and desire to make peace. 

Anger clings onto offenses. Conversely, peace opens our hearts and minds to release them. May we all be more willing to let go.  

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