Reflecting on Compromise….

Sometimes it feels like things just pile up, one or top of the other. We think we are handling it all very well, until the smallest annoyance sets us off. We lose our temper with the wrong person, or allow that annoyance to spoil an otherwise lovely evening. Summer heat adds to it all, shortening tempers and trying our patience. Even the smallest tasks seem difficult. So I was drawn to this photo of a rock tower, taken by my friend Joseph. There was a rock beach on Block Island where Joseph and JoAnn spent their honeymoon last month. This rock tower was waiting for them when they arrived, patiently built by someone who came before them. Joseph was inspired to make a tower of his own. You can see one small tower in the background of this photo. In the Old Testament, piles of rocks were often constructed to commemorate a certain event, or agreement. We hear how Laban sought out Jacob, who left with Laban’s daughters and sheep, after working for Laban for many years and becoming his son-in-law. They iron out an agreement, to divide their property, and build a rock tower to remind themselves of both the conflict and its resolution. The rock tower Joseph found is much more like those Old Testament rock towers. Instead of building up resentment, rock upon rock, these towers represent the building of trust, the forging of compromises, and the cementing of relationships. So when conflict seems to abound, remember you are in good company. Build up your relationships, rather than allowing the busy-ness of life to tear them down. Take time today to address your grievances as they occur, rather than allowing these concerns to spill over into the peaceful parts of your life. Calmly explain the effect another’s behavior has upon you, trusting they may not understand what they did was hurtful. Talk about how to move on from here, rather than dwelling in the past or blaming one another. With God as our firm foundation, we all can start building our own towers, one rock at a time. Photo by Joseph Syzdek


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