The Mask of Defeat
Tulle stood by the sink washing dishes, as she visualized the past year.
Toby was always annoyed with her.
What she cooked was never pleasing to him. Either it was too much, or never enough food. The same old thing or it didn’t taste good together. She cooked it wrong, or she had fixed it at the wrong time.
Trying to please him was impossible in other areas also. There wasn’t enough softener in his shirts. He wanted her to run errands for him, but she always got it wrong kind of, whatever he had ask her to get.
The Dog food was the wrong size bag. The Car oil was the wrong brand.
Perhaps she really wasn’t paying attention.
Tulle had been raised to obey and honor her husband, and more than anything do, she really wanted to get it right.
Where could she go for help?
Tulle had been patient beyond belief.
For months now she had not said anything, she just listened, and tried to correct the mistakes she was making.
Now she was noticing, Tibias was exasperated with other things also.
He would only watch the news channel, but then became irritated with statements made by the commentator.
Opinions given by guests would almost leave him in a rage.
When the children came over, he found fault with them also. Even the grandchildren bothered him.
Her concern was that something might be seriously wrong. Aside from the fact, that no one could live with him.
What if he was ill or in depression? She had read articles about it, and he certainly had symptoms.
They had worked all of there life to retire, and now he did not want to go anywhere or do anything.
As a younger man, he had enjoyed woodworking. He had even dabbled at oil painting.
When she suggested any of those things now, he would simply tell her, “ No. I don’t want to do that.”
He simply watched TV or slept. Of course, that made him available to watch her.
He was simply miserable, and was making everyone else around him miserable.
For the most part, she went on with life. There always seem to be things to do. Even housework kept her busy. She enjoyed walking, reading, writing, and helping, by taking food to shut-ins. She had a purpose in life, should she have to find a purpose for him?
Wasn’t anger an emotion you had to deal with yourself?
Tulle decided to do a word study on the word, “Honor”. She knew God required her to honor her husband.
Looking it up in the dictionary, and then finding Bible verses, using the synonyms she found.
To her amazement, found a cause and effect.
Tibias’ attitude was not an action, but a reaction.
To honor your husband, had not been what she was doing.
Words like, paying tribute, respecting, and admiring, certainly had not been any of the feelings she has shown him lately.
The self-sufficient, independent, resolute way she lived her daily life had been just as wrong as Tibias.
It had been how she handled all of her anger. She had quietly stuffed it inside, and lived in self-controlled world.
Her thoughts had been, ”While she could not control him, she certainly would control her feelings.”
Whether it manifests itself, inside or out, anger wears many faces.It is like a cancer eating away. It not only destroys the person that is angry, it also affects all of those whose life they touch.
Fortitude, courage, and inner-strength are the opposite of anger. Those can be good character traits. However, if they place self in control, instead of God, they allow pride to take over. These traits then become a mask of defeat.
The most beautiful picture of both emotions, is King Saul and David in the Old Testament.
After King Saul disobeyed God, and the Spirit of God left him, he became angry. So angry he could not sleep, and was so unhappy he became mad.
David, on the other hand, was a man after God’s own heart. He had joy even in the midst of trouble.
In order for such Anger to control you, your life would have to be so self-centered, that even as a Christian the Holy Spirit would have no freedom to control your thoughts.
One verse in the Bible warns us, “Quench not the Spirit”.
Anger, acts as the fire hose, when applied to the sweet Holy Spirit.
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||25 Mar 2005
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