Letting Go

Don't use bad language. Say only what is good and helpful to those you are talking to, and what will give them a blessing.

Don't cause the Holy Spirit sorrow by the way you live. Remember, he is the one who marks you to be present on that day when salvation from sin will be complete.

Stop being mean, bad-tempered and angry. Quarreling, harsh words, and dislike of others should have no place in your lives. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God has forgiven you because you belong to Christ, Ephesians 4: 29-32 (TLB)

Sandi Ann Lumpkin lives in Indiana. When she was 13 years old, she entered her pet Charolais calf in the local county fair. She had raised the calf from the time he was born. He was so white and fluffy Sandi had named him Cotton.

When it was time to show Cotton, Sandi led him into the arena. Halfway into the show ring something startled him, and he bolted. Sandi held on to the lead strap, and he dragged her across the sawdust floor. The show ring helpers were yelling, "Let go! Let go!" When Sandi finally did let go, she has some scrapes and a bruised ego.

Too often we hang on to negative attitudes, feelings, and behaviors which can cause harm to ourselves and to others. Bitterness, rage, and anger are just some of the feelings that can cause damage as we focus only on ourselves. If we act on these feelings, they can hurt others as well. Most important, negative behaviors can hinder our Christian witness. Such harmful attitudes hold us back from being loving, forgiving persons.

When we become angry or hurt, we can listen as the Holy Spirit urges us to "Let go!" Then with the Spirit's help we can rid ourselves of the attitudes, feelings, and behaviors so harmful to ourselves and others and become who God calls us to be. This is not easy but definitely worth the effort.

Prayers: Heavenly Father, help us to listen to the Holy Spirit telling us to let go of harmful attitudes and behaviors so that our speech and actions may be pleasing to you, in Jesus' name, amen.

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