I went grocery shopping yesterday and it wasn’t long until I became an angry shopper.
I met a woman coming the wrong way down the well-marked aisle. I kindly pointed it out to her and she walked right and muttered, “I don’t think so”. It immediately sparked something primal in me. I replied, “no, really. There are arrows on the floor”. She replied without stopping or looking back, “I don’t see anything”. “Really?” I barked, and turned to go. That’s when she muttered something rude. I won’t repeat it.
It made me angry: her sense of entitlement to break the rules, her assumptions about me, and overall, the complete lack of respect.
Anger is a natural response. In some cases, it’s an appropriate response. Even Jesus got angry. But he didn’t live angry. He didn’t feel angry. Not all the time. It was one of the reasons that I quit my job. I felt angry all the time, and I don’t want to be that person.
I don’t want to drive angry. I don’t want to work angry. I don’t want to live angry.
On the way home from the store, Skillet’s song, Legendary, was playing.
Every day I fight to be…Legendary
What does that mean? I know for some it means building an empire, getting noticed, having a following. As a Christ Follower, I am not called to build my kingdom but God’s.
Somewhere along the way, God started to connect the dots. To be legendary means to live every day as Jesus did. Jesus spoke out against injustice. He built up the poor and the weak. He loved the outcast. The very things we let divide us never mattered to Him. Instead of skin colour or cultural backgrounds, He saw people who struggled and hurt.
Legends made when faith is strong.
It sounds simplistic, but if we all adopted the attitudes of Jesus, wouldn’t it stand to reason that our actions would become an outpouring from a place of love. Our own sense of importance and entitlement would dissipate. We would have the energy to focus on fighting for the things that matter – “breaking down the wall of hostility” – instead of fighting each other.
I’m not naive nor do I belong on a soapbox. I know the problems in our world are greater than any one person. Or any one group of people. But it doesn’t mean I stop trying. I can choose to be angry, or I can choose to live another way.