empowering women on a quest for more

Change Agent

Every Tuesday is trash day. That means every Tuesday morning, we move our large trash bin from the garage to the end of our driveway. Then, the trash fairies come so when I get home in the afternoon, all of our trash is gone and I have a nice, empty trash bin.

Except that didn’t happen today.

I went to retrieve my empty trash bin except it wasn’t empty. Someone had used it to deposit their dog’s…waste.

Now, granted it was in a bag but still! Was my bin the first one they saw? I don’t even have a dog! Now, they have an empty trash bin and ours “stinketh” (#Marthaquotes).

Doesn’t that happen in life too? We’re just standing there, minding our own business, and then someone decides to dump all their stuff on us.

The co-worker in a bad mood. The child who didn’t get their nap. The spouse who had a long day.

And what happens? We get drawn in. Before we know it, we’re in a bad mood too and need a nap.

You may have heard of a woman in the Bible named Naomi but did you know she asked that people call her something else? (Prince wasn’t the first one to do this). Ruth 1:19b And the women said, “Is this Naomi?” 20 She said to them, “Do not call me Naomi; call me Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me.

Naomi means pleasant. Mara means bitter.
She had a good reason for this request – her life had been hard. Her husband and two sons had passed away.

Ruth, one of her daughters-in-law chose to stay with Naomi instead of going back home. At that point, if I were Ruth, I may have had a change of heart. I would have told Naomi…I mean Mara…“Hey, it’s been real but I think we’re done here”.

But Ruth doesn’t do that. In fact, we don’t see her give into Naomi’s bitterness at all, even though she had every reason to be bitter too. After all, she had also lost her husband.

Ruth’s response to the situation didn’t just help turn her life around, it impacted Naomi as well. The “Mara” we saw at the beginning of the book isn’t the same woman at the end. When they called her Naomi, she didn’t correct them. Her bitterness was gone, her pleasantness had returned.

Proverbs 25:15 Patient persistence pierces through indifference; gentle speech breaks down rigid defenses.

Lysa TerKeurst says, “Do I walk into situations prepared with the fullness of God in me, free to look for ways to bless others? Or do I walk into situations empty & dependent on others to look for ways to bless me?”

What will our response in a negative situation do? Will it add fuel to the fire or water for a thirsty soul? Will it stir up anger or help turn away wrath?

2 Corinthians 2: 15-16 (MSG) Through us, He {God} brings the knowledge of Christ. Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life…”

Through the love of Christ, we have the ability to change the environment we are in…no matter how stinky it may be.

~Anu

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