Monday, January 10, 2011

Sometimes we bite

Her eyes showed a mixture of anger and fear as she lunged forward and sank her teeth into the hand of my 14 year old daughter. Our terrier mix, Daisy, has bitten before but she had never bitten my daughter Paige. Paige was stunned in disbelief and the next several hours were filled with throbbing pain and a broken heart. Daisy is her most loyal friend and Paige adores her. The feeling has always been mutual. But this wasn’t about whether or not Daisy loved Paige. This was a physical response to Daisy’s emotional state of mind.

Sound familiar? Are you a biter? Or do you keep getting bit? The things we feel and think in our hearts and minds inevitably find their way out. They become our actions. You’ve probably heard it said, ‘hurting people hurt people.’ I remember watching Steel Magnolias when Sally Field’s character, M’Lynn, just buried her oldest daughter, Shelby. In the graveyard she tells her friends “I just want to hit somebody ‘til they feel as bad as I do!” M’Lynn was a gentile southern woman and such a suggestion was completely out of character for her… but it was honest. How many times have we wanted to make other people feel as bad or as angry as we are but we can’t admit that to ourselves?

Daisy lashed out at Paige. As a result, Paige was hurt. More emotionally than physically (her hand is doing better). Yes, I understand she’s a dog but the nature of the action is the same. Sometimes we bite. We hurt those around us because we’re hurting and most of the time it will be unintentional. If we can’t acknowledge our own pain, doubts, disappointments and grief it is bound to ‘bite’ the people closest to us. We lash out, draw blood and then we feel terrible. Daisy was shocked to find her teeth in Paige’s hand. You could see it in her face. She had no idea what she was doing until it was too late.

Do you have some thoughts or emotions you need to deal with so that you don’t bite? Or are you the one that has been bit and now is dealing with your own emotions? Do you need to forgive the one who bit you? Change doesn’t happen overnight, but it can happen. The first step is going to God and sharing what you’re feeling. Allow Him to bring the help you need. God is able to calm even the most savage of beasts…

Be blessed,

“From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.” Psalm 61:2-4


Unknown said...

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