stories, lessons, and a lot of nonsense

taking things personally

Have you ever read a facebook status or a blog post and thought, “Wait, are they talking about me?”  I haven’t much, but every so often, I combine my knowledge of someone’s disdain for me with their status and wonder.  That, of course, begs the question: if I know they have disdain for me, why are they on my friend list on facebook?  Well, not only did Christ die for some people that annoy the living smell (sp) out of me, but He seems to think it’s a good idea to put those people near me, sometimes in very close proximity.  Sometimes I get to be friends with those people.  Sometimes I have emotional, moody, passive aggressive friends, and if they will make a status about someone else we know, then they could surely take an indirect swipe on me.

But why would I ever think that someone is talking about me?  Usually, it’s because I can see truth in what they say about me, whether they are directing it towards me or not.  Sometimes a person’s comment could be in regards to someone else, but the Holy Spirit pressed on my heart.  He says very nice things, like, “Whoa!  Whoever they are talking about sounds like a real jerk.  Sounds like you a bit, too.”  It’s not a good feeling.

I have sat through sermons, read blog posts, read entire chapters of some books, and scanned through many facebook statuses that make me think I’m being talked to directly.  Sometimes I am, but more often than not, I am not, but still my heart is pricked.  I take it personally.  And when someone says something, and the Holy Spirit pricks my heart, and I begin to take it personally, I have one of two options: being angrily offended or being mournfully convicted.  Most people take the, “how dare he…” offended approach.  I certainly have, but I try to get myself into the convicted stage quickly.

Here’s a tip for you, from someone who has praught (Sarah’s made up word for the teach-to-taught equivalent for the word preach), someone who has written blog posts, and someone who has eaten a lot of ice cream in his life: we’re not talking about you intentionally.  If we do well, we preach what God tells us to preach, write what God inspires us to write, and eat the biggest bowl we can find.  If you take it personally, it’s probably the Holy Spirit telling you to.  You might want to consider getting over yourself and getting convicted.

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Comments on: "taking things personally" (7)

  1. I once wrote a post called “Why I’m okay with being obnoxious” where I said, “If you don’t like me, I probably don’t like you either, but that’s okay.”

    I got an email from a person who thought I was talking about them. I wasn’t at all, but I think you’re right about the conviction versus the anger thing. That’s a great perspective.

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Robin M Arnold, Jeff Selph. Jeff Selph said: taking things personally: http://wp.me/pLWlM-9O […]

  3. Good one, Jeff! And I’m sorry about all the times I wrote statuses about you…

  4. You talkin’ bout me aren’t you?

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