Monday, June 20, 2011

Words to Live By!

"You are not God.
This ain't heaven.
Don't be an ass!"

Words of a Jesuit Novice master to his new charges...

A dear friend of mine sent those words to me after I had blasted him in an email quite awhile ago now, as I was upset at a couple of folks who didn't return emails I had sent. Sadly he bore the brunt when he didn't either, though I was to find out that he changed his main email address, thus didn't see my email until much later. Instead of blasting me right back or ending a friendship, he responded with compassion and defused my anger. I am forever grateful to him for doing so and to the anonymous Jesuit who spoke the words above.

The good Jesuit challenges us to keep it real and not make fools out of ourselves. When we let God be God, truly accept that no one, save God, is perfect, we won't end up making an ass out of ourselves. How often do we do the opposite, and allow our anger, fear, resentment, judgement control us, causing us to speak words that we cannot take back? We're not in charge and people are who they are...

When we do forget, we need to apologize as soon as possible, and demonstrate that we mean it. We need to be aware of emotions and thoughts as they arise, acknowledge them appropriately, in order to diffuse their emotional power. This doesn't mean to deny them, but rather take the fire out of them until such time as we can calmly examine why they arose. We then need to take appropriate action or not, depending on the situation. In a word, we need to get over ourselves!

 "Friendship" by Picasso 


Stephen Taylor said...

Better words have not been spoken. Excellent words, absolutely wonderful.

Thom, SFO said...

This is very tough for me. Thanks for this. I love that quote.

Br. Yossi, CoS Cam said...

Thanks be to God!