Out of the mud…into the sun

Have you ever had one of those moments when you went “this was so meant for me”?  I had one of those the other morning when doing our morning devotional with the boys. We were reading through the Proverb of the day and came across this passage:

Proverbs 22:24-25 (English Standard Version)

24Make no friendship with a man given to anger,
   nor go with a wrathful man,
25lest you learn his ways
   and entangle yourself in a snare.
Those 2 verses really spoke to me. They hit my right where it hurts in a sense. I have to confess sometimes I like to just stew in being angry. I feel justified to be mean, to be short with those around me and in general just be a big gray cloud over everyone’s head. When I start to get in a funk I like to surround myself with others who are also in a funk. We just sit in our funkiness and sulk.
I was in a funk a few weeks ago. The thing about sulking with others is that when you’re done and you leave them in the mud puddle alone and you hang out again…you realize just how toxic that attitude is. This is where I am. I am out of that rainy cloud and my friends aren’t. There are some of my friends that are never out of it…they are perpetually negative, grumpy and wronged in one way or another. I am seeing and feeling just how weighty that kind of friendship is.
I try to be positive and point out the good side of the situation, but this friend can always find a bit of gloom and dwells on that. She is a real true to life Eeyore.
What to do with Eeyore. What to do? What do I do with myself? I am so thankful that I have hope in Christ and the assurance that God is in control. He holds my future, He knows my heart and hurt. He cares. It is only by His grace that I am ever able to pull out of that funk that sometimes grabs and holds so very tight I wonder if I’ll ever see the sun again. But I do, and God always sees me through. I’ve noticed that when I’m on the other side of my funk I have done the most growing in my relationship with Him and with others.
Back to Eeyore. What do you do with a friend like that? I can find a thousand ways that eeyore can look at life differently, a thousand things to be thankful for and a thousand solutions, but it’s never the right one or one that is agreeable. I think my friend enjoys playing in the mud and being the rain cloud too much. When I’m around her my mood sinks, my outlook darkens and I feel rotten. I’ve seen that attitude spread to others. My Eeyore isn’t just negative and down about everything, but she’s angry. She always feel those around her are out to get her, she looks continuously for a fight or conflict with others. There is always some kind of turmoil and conflict, a reason she can’t work with someone, a reason she doesn’t like someone and a reason she is the victim. It’s tedious and tiring to be around her, but yet I feel the need to be her friend. I feel the need to try to “fix it”, to make it better, to make her happier. (I’m a fixer by nature, by the way). I’m Christopher Robin and she’s Eeyore.
These verses convicted me this last week about the time I spend in conversation with my own Eeyore, the time I spend sulking and participating in that whole “funk” process. I need to make a conscious decision not to be negative and not participate in “Eeyore” behavior. It also means to me that I have to be willing to stop conversation and get out of the mud puddle.  

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