It wasn’t my finest hour.
One of my daughters had come into town for a day, an opportunity that’s always a delight because she lives quite a distance away. It was work-related, so we weren’t going to see much of her.
We needed to make the most of our time with her.
I had commitments that I could have changed. I could have flexed.
Instead, I chose to follow through on what I said I’d do; I missed time with my girl.
I felt guilt throughout the time I was away. Returning home, I was confronted by my daughter, who was deeply hurt by my choices. She was on her way to the airport, and there wasn’t time for an in-depth conversation. I tried to apologize for my lack of sensitivity, but time constraints made it seem less than sincere.
John took her to the airport, but before she left, two of her sisters came over to see her for the short amount of time she had. Once my husband and other daughter were gone, the other two turned to me with genuine concern for my lack of awareness for how I missed the opportunity to spend time with her.
I did what I so often do–I tried to justify why I’d made that decision. There was that commitment: I felt responsible for following through, and I’d be seeing my daughter in another week and a half when their whole family returns.
Those were comments made from guilt and shame. Rationalizations so I wouldn’t feel so rotten about the choice I made. If I could justify it to my other daughters, maybe I’d feel better.
They wouldn’t let me get away with it. They pushed me for truth, and I was backing away from admitting my poor choice.
.The conversation became heated; I grew up hearing a lot of yelling and screaming, and my response when I’m backed into a corner was to raise my voice. Which I did. But eleven-year-old Isley was in the next room, and she wasn’t used to the yelling. Not only did I make a bad choice with my one daughter; I rather terrified my grand with my loud decibel level
Hanging on to a personal agenda instead of taking into account those around me can look selfish. That the only thing that matters is what I want. That’s not how I want to live my life. I want to choose to be more compassionate and caring.
King David struggled with wrong motives and poor choices as well. His words show incredible wisdom.
“Commit EVERYTHING you do to the Lord. Trust Him, and He will help you.” Psalm 37:5
Trusting the Lord with my choices means to consider His truth before I make a decision, not just reacting to unwieldy emotions. It means considering others rather than just myself, because any decision I make typically will have an impact on those around me, no matter how small that ripple effect may be.
I managed to apologize and ask forgiveness of all my daughters and my grand, but how much easier it would have been if I had paused to think before I spoke.
I’m still a work in progress.