I guess you thought, huh, choosing? :) We all have the freedom to choose the things we want or don't want in life, but I don't think we realize many times that we ALSO choose how we react to others. Let me try to tell you what I mean. If someone hurts us by an ugly remark or just by saying what they think, we choose how it will effect us. We choose to keep harboring the bitterness or hurt about it or we can choose not to let it bother us. Lots of times the hurt is so bad to us that we have to have HELP with not letting it bother us. We have to ask God for His help because we can't do it on our own. We might need to ask Him to help us with ALL our problems though, not with just some of them. But we tend to ask Him only when we can't handle it. But we still get to choose how we're going to let it effect us. If we're going to keep on talking about it, bringing it up to others. We choose........ We all have folks in our lives I'm sure, that look for fault like it's a buried treasure by being critical of others or trying to find the negative in things instead of trying to find the positive. Some of my friends and I were just talking about how nice it was when folks do nice things and when folks let us know they appreciated something nice we did for them. I was telling them that I just dearly love stories like that because so many people look for the negatives and just don't see the positives. It's so easy to see the negatives, they just jump out at us. We have to search for the positives sometimes but it sure is fun dissecting it trying to find the positives and training our minds to not focus on the faults of others and being critical of them. We all have beams in our own eyes as the Bible talks about. Pay attention each day, how many times you're critical of others or when you're finding fault in others. Ask God to help you look for the good in people and find the positive. He tells us in His word to think on things that are good, pure and lovely etc. I am no better than anyone else.
I read something a few years ago in a self help book about folks that find fault in others and are critical of others and it said they do that to try and make themselves look better in their own eyes. It said they didn't have a good self esteem about themselves so they did that to try and make them look better in their own eyes. Be happy for others when they have gain. Be sad when they don't have things. Be compassionate because you never know when you will be in THEIR shoes. PLUS that's the RIGHT THING to do by the scriptures! We are to think of others before ourselves. You really really never know someones circumstances, what they are going through at home, or at work etc. Stop judging them. The scriptures tells us the measure we judge, we will be judged.
Edited to add this that I just got in the mail today from my favorite junk store that help folks. This awesome prayer was written by Samuel Pugh.
Oh God, when I have food,
help me to remember the hungry;
When I have work,
help me to remember the jobless;
When I have a home,
help me to remember those who have no home at all,
When I am without pain,
help me to remember those who suffer;
help me to destroy my complacency, bestir my compassion,
And be concerned enough to help, by word and deed,
those who cry out for what we take for granted.
THIS is the day the Lord hath made,
let us rejoice and be glad in it. Ps. 118:24 (WE CHOOSE, let's choose to be glad and not be critical of others)