Then I realized that it's Saturday, and I don't have to go to work!
But the fact that the stress from work follows me throughout the weekend began to get me down, so I began to ask God how I could deal with the few people who are causing me anxiety and frustration at work. (I know I'm supposed to say that I allow the feelings to take over, not that the other people cause those feelings. I remember an especially inspiring chapel message at Asbury University from many years ago that taught me that.)
My mind wandered to the fact that many people don't even have a job, and that I should be thankful for what I have, and believe me, I am. I like my job a lot. I'm just having a hard time dealing with a few people (some in boss-type positions) who don't treat people well, and some who don't do their jobs well, causing more work for me. I began to feel guilty for dreading work. Then I thought of the really poor, and how I wish I could help all of them, give to every good charity, save all the widows and orphans in Africa (not joking; I'm for real), sponsor every child on the Compassion website . . . and on and on and on.
I was digging myself a HUGE hole!
I began listening to the new album "Live Like That" from Sidewalk Prophets. It won't be available in iTunes until this coming Monday, but the group has made it available for listening on its website, and I have listened over and over. I will have the entire album memorized by the time I get it Sunday night.
And I realized . . . all I have to do is "live like that." I can't change those people who treat me and others unfairly or those who don't do their jobs the way they should. I also must not allow them to monopolize my thoughts or allow myself to feel at fault. If I "live like that and give it all I have so that everything I say and do points to You," then I'm good to go.
So the answer is to change my focus. To focus on how I live, not on how those around me live. I'm not saying this is an instant change. Right now I pretty much feel like just sitting on my couch and crying . . . for a long time. That's just what happens to me sometimes. But IF I focus on the change in focus (I did that on purpose), I will make a difference to those who mistreat and frustrate me.
Thank you, Sidewalk Prophets, for allowing God to use you to speak to me.