The path of life is a complex one, with twists and turns and many roads we’d rather not take, particularly when it comes to our feelings. The signposts on those roads read “bitterness,” “jealousy,” “fear,” and the like.
I’ve tended to view those feelings as non-optional, as if someone who hurt me or a situation that disappointed me gave me a big shove down one of those roads, and all I could do was walk forward on it. However, I’ve realized that’s the mentality of a victim, and I’d like to believe I’m not the victim of my story but rather the heroine.
Perhaps a more helpful analogy is this: when one of those difficult circumstances happens, it forces me to come to a crossroads. My initial emotional response may indeed be non-optional, as some things are just really hard, and I’m a human, not a robot. But as for which feeling I continue to walk in, that I get to decide.
If I’ve been hurt, the “anger” road, for instance, will certainly be easier to take than the one towards peace, which will be an uphill climb. But I still get to decide which way to go.
This isn’t a one-time decision, by the way. That situation may cross my mind one hundred times in a day, giving me one hundred opportunities to move towards either anger or peace.
Though the process may not be easy, engaging with it might just change everything.
What will you decide?