3Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye? 4 How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove that splinter from your eye,’ while the wooden beam is in your eye? 5 You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter from your brother’s eye. [Matthew 7:3-5 NABRE]
This morning I was dreading going into work today. It was the first full day back to work after hurricane Irma. I have been dealing noise since last Thursday when Irma’s saga began for us. Since noise is a trigger for pain in me I was not looking forward to an entire day in cubicle land with everyone recounting their new hurricane stories, gossiping, and telling their problems.
The air around me will be buzzing with voices. I thought as I looked in the mirror. There was Ms. Fix-it was staring back at me as I was getting ready for work. Instead of praying this morning I was listening to her run scenarios as to how I could get people to stop talking to me so I could concentrate on my work.
I felt the anxiety began to build inside my gut and pressure building in my chest. The weight of the world began to rest on my shoulders. I realized I was spiraling down and not keeping my eye on my Star, Jesus. I breathed his name, “Jesus.”
At that moment I recalled Matthew 7. It was one of those moments when I understood something from a different perspective. I have believed this scripture to be about judging someone else when I need to look at the same issue in myself.
As usual God is not limited to one meaning in his Holy Word. I found another lesson in these same words. It is: Stop trying to fix it and fix everyone else including myself. I can’t fix the 2017 hurricane damage. I can’t fix the noise around me. I can’t fix my Dad. I can’t fix my friend’s, or family’s, or even stranger’s problems. Heck! I can’t fix my own problems. It was so simple.
To “fix it” I need to lean on the Holy Trinity and let God “fix it.” He is my guiding star.
What did I do? I prayed the rosary as I got ready for work. The repetitive prayers helped focus my soul back on Jesus. Then I could read my devotional and focus on what God was guiding me to do today. Through prayer I turned my day over to God for his guidance. I became aware of the Holy Spirit guiding me and teaching me how I to fix so many things. I ask for and give tons of advice. I analyze problems. Some of this is wonderful. Like an experience I have been given to share that may help someone see a situation from a different perspective. It feels soooo good when I can give a little of what God has given me.
But for me each virtue there seems to be a vice. I seem to become prideful, like I did something good. When, actually it was God who guided me and “fixed it.” Then I start taking it too far. Because puffed up with my pride I think I can “fix it.” In this example I start pushing advice and expecting the same results from my friends’ situations when it is God who’s in charge of their situation. Not me.
Wow! Talk about deflated. I think I need a lot more humility here. Well I worked on it today. I’ll tell I wasn’t good at it. I’m stumbling a bit. I want to analyze and solve every problem. I want to be the ‘go to gal!’ I’m practicing stepping back and letting the solutions develop without my interference. I jumped in a few times. But for the most part I backed off. I said silent prayers for the people I was in contact with. I also listened to their weekend hurricane war stories.
Instead of talking over people or bustling off to get busy with my workload, I found I could relax a little and enjoy my day. I found most people I talked to expressed gratitude at the blessings God bestowed on the east coast of Florida. I found people of Faith all around me. What an eye-opener (pardon the pun). I enjoyed my co-workers today. More than I have in a very long time. Oh! And I did get work done too!
I also realized I have a very large plank in my own eye which blocks me from seeing the people around me with God’s eyes.
Like a child with an owie I’m asking:
“Please God, can you take a look at this big thing in my eye and fix it? I can’t see very well with in there.”