A Break from the Heat

Categories: Blog

July 10, 2017

The paper boy dutifully performed his task in Chicago’s cold, December air. But as he tossed the next paper onto the awaiting porch, his wheels hit black ice. The momentum from the throw made the bicycle’s wheels slip right out from under him, and he crashed to the ground. Hard.

I laughed. A lot.

Every time I see this video clip, I laugh. It gets me every time. As a survivor of five Chicago winters myself (including “Snowmageddon”), I can relate. I’ve fallen prey to the notoriously icy sidewalks myself. But why would I laugh at another’s misfortune?

THE WORST PART

Let’s face it: sometimes we’re mean. Our flesh comes out and shows its ugly head. The worst part is we derive some sort of pleasure out of another’s suffering. Maybe like me, it hit a funny bone. Or maybe it makes us feel better about our own shortcomings. Maybe we’re glad that that person finally got his or her comeuppance.

The opposite seems to bring out our ugly side as well. When someone else succeeds, the green monster of jealousy threatens to ruin our happiness. In no way are we worse off than before their prosperity, but for some reason, we struggle to share their happiness.

 THE SAME TEAM

I’ve had to realize that we’re all on the same team. The Golden Rule took on a deeper meaning when I realized that I don’t want people reveling in my failures, so why would I find pleasure in theirs? And when someone succeeds or receives a blessing, it’s a lot more fun to celebrate with them than to steam in the corner like a jealous broccoli floret. Especially because there’s usually cake involved. Or pie.

I’ve learned that our battle isn’t against flesh and blood. “And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it” (I Corinthians 12:26). Why bother fighting with people if they aren’t the enemy? Our actual adversary, who desires every bad thing for us, doesn’t even hold a candle to God, our Creator and Protector. That same Protector created us to be in relationship with one another, to love each other – family, friends, even those who persecute us – with a sacrificial love.

What if we reallocate all that negative energy to encouraging others? To loving life alongside them? If we all focused on camaraderie rather than competition, how much better would we reflect John 13:35?

Let’s take a break from the heat of competition and comparison, and sincerely put effort into loving one another.

Family Radio Staff

4 Responses to "A Break from the Heat"

  1. Frank Neumaier Posted on July 11, 2017 at 3:30 am

    What is love one to another? Is it being nice and sweet and loving as the world loves? or is it a Jesus type love…being an example of righteousness, of patience, of forgiving as we are forgiven, of praying for their salvation…and even though we may not be appreciated or understood, in that long race to the other side, from those seeds, eventually and hopefully impart understanding in others…sometime long after we are gone.

  2. @MPOliver Posted on July 11, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    The “Human nature” that causes us to exalt somebody else’s calamity is the same human nature that prevents or attempts to prevent our communication with God and our becoming one with the mind of God do that like Him; we also show compassion, forgiveness and sympathy.

  3. Gary Posted on July 13, 2017 at 5:44 am

    To stay connected with the Word of God is our answer. We are truly transformed as we read His’s Word. As I say this I want to say more but my words are not the words to transform anyone. Just say I am heart felt and must get dressed daily with the armor .

  4. Dante Posted on July 19, 2017 at 8:39 pm

    As I keep realizing how much of a sinner I am to God, and how much He has forgiven me, the more I understand just how much I have in common with others. How much I ought to forgive others’ spiritual blindness – jealousy, envyings, resentments…etc.

    Jude 1
    20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,
    21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
    22 And of some have compassion, making a difference:
    23 And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.
    24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,
    25 To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.

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