Assuming The Best

by Andrew Fuller

So many pains, hurts, feelings of rejection, destroyed friendships, and reputations destroyed by gossip can be avoided with this one principle…. assume the best. In many ways, this automatically enables us to show Christ love without really making a conscious effort.

Next time someone hurts or offends us we need to immediately ask our selves this question: “Why did they do this? Why did they respond in this particular way?” We cannot base our answer to these questions on an immediate gut response or assumption. We do not have to figure out the answer to this question every time, however it changes our focus from how we feel, to a concern for other person when we assume the best of them. By responding in this manner we show, love, forgiveness, and genuine care for the individual… a picture of Christ’s love for them. Sometimes the answer is obvious, sometimes its not. Even though these questions can reveal many things, they don’t have to be answered every time. Even if the questions don’t reveal an answer right away, we have automatically surrendered the situation to Christ and aren’t holding a grudge against them and we aren’t harboring any resentment toward them. It’s the heart behind the question
that is the key. We met the situation with forgiveness and a caring / loving concern about the other persons heart and life.

When people seem to be distant, closed, or seem to be ignoring others, frequently the answers include emotional pain and hurt in their heart, shame / feeling guilty, they are used to receiving harsh words or abuse, fear or uncertainty, feeling inadequate, or thinking we that will respond with offense as a result of their actions toward us whether it be recent or in the past.

With our friends and family, not thinking in this manner can easily result in someone feeling offended, hurt, or rejected, as well as opening opportunity for gossip by either person. This has the potential to degrade or even destroy the others persons name. In a family, whether it is between a husband and wife, between a parent and child, or between siblings, this can be a very useful key to sorting out (or even completely avoiding) many offenses, hurts and misunderstandings.

Think about this: by not assuming the best of others in a situation (and thereby solving the problem), we may tell others about our problems, (even when we need help). We are now spreading information about others that is in essence false or maybe a small and easy to overcome situation. Could this be a form of gossip? Lets say we operate on a strictly “need to know” basis and all else is gossip, if we were to ask this simple question, nobody else would need to be brought into the situation…(I am not saying counseling is wrong. I’m just pointing out the potential of how much could be solved without it)

Simply put, assuming the best and asking ourselves the question “Why did they do that”, often shows an answer that is something totally different than what we first assumed. Busyness and distraction are easy ones to see, but there are lots of others.

Healed

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Taryn, 9/18/13 – About 3-4 years ago I was in a snowboarding accident, I took a really hard spill and pinched the sciatic nerves in the left side of my lower back/hip area. It has been very painful for me to stand for long periods of time or even lie down flat on my back, if possible at all without my body locking up disabling me to get up without someone helping me. Any kind of vigorous workout would cause the pain to flare up intensely. One Sunday at the end of service Derek came up to the front to inform Mitch that God has given him this vision and said someone in here needs healing on there left side lower back/hip area. I happen to be standing about 2 feet away and heard Derek explain his vision. I immediately told Derek and Mitch that it was me and shared my story with them. We decided it would be best to get together with Derek and his wife Sharon to pray over me and we did, right then. Later that day I was looking forward to going to the tanning bed to “lay down” relax, and get some color! It was at that moment when I laid completely flat on my back, tanned for 15 minutes and was able to get up all on my own without any pain. God had down a miracle and healed me!

For more testimonies of healing visit: http://dphealing.wordpress.com/

Enough

by Laura Johnson
http://muddymama.wordpress.com/

I did a bike race a couple of weeks ago. Well, sort of. I think about 15 people showed up. It was also a hill climb. I have never, ever been good at hill climbs since I started racing at age 16.

laura

Yep, so slow that Abi caught me….while walking

But I did it anyway, 10 miles, all uphill, a very steady, boring dirt road climb. I finished last. Following the race, I felt pretty good about it. It was a gorgeous day, I made a new mountain biking mama friend, Wes and the kids had a good time, and I got over 2 hours all to myself. We went and iced my legs in the lake and we all splashed around and had a super fun day. But as the days passed after, I started beating back the demons.

They had been circling in the weeks prior, too, but I let my guard down and now they became louder.

I’d drop Abi off at school. “Why are you not even dressed? That’s slobby. Not good enough.”

I’d go to work out. “You’re weak. You’re slow. Not an athlete. Not good enough.”

I’d try to take care of Liam. “He’s (not eating/throwing massive tantrums/hitting) because you’re not parenting him enough.”

I’d sit down to try to work. “You’ll never catch up. This is going nowhere. Not enough.”

I’d try to pick up around the house. “You’re just messy. It’s getting gross around here. Not enough.”

I could go on, but I’m know I’m not alone in struggling with these thoughts. They spiraled on and on and downward, and before I knew it, they had taken over and I wasn’t acting like myself. I was sleeping through lunch and letting the piles accumulate around the house.

But last week, I dragged myself to a mom’s group at our church where our senior pastor’s wife came and spoke with us. She talked about letting go of comparison and competition.

I realized there’s only one standard, only one question I should be measuring by:

Did I love today?

Because that’s enough. And it’s not hard.

It’s enough to beat back all the demons. They hate it.

I can love my kids, my husband, and even share an encouraging word with someone else in public while wearing my sweatpants while Liam pulls my hair out of its ponytail and screams in my ear.

I can love and invite someone into my home and then warn them that there are Legos, K’nex, and possibly even staples on the floor, so they should leave their shoes on.

I can love and take my daughter on a bike ride in the rain and share with her the joy of time spent outside, no matter how fast or slow or strong or weak.

I can love and wear a smile on my face because love is enough.