Go “Light” with the “Salt”

spilled_saltI blew it this morning.  When I went out to my SUV to leave for the gym in the dark of the early morning hours, I found that the battery was low and it wouldn’t start.  I was frustrated.  I had to go back into the house and get the keys to my wife’s car, back it out of the garage and boost my vehicle.  As I was doing so, the hood on my SUV kept shutting.  It was dark and chilly and the stupid hood wouldn’t stay up…I was getting angry.  (Even now as I think about it I’m getting angry).  A few loud growls later I finally got it started and with much gusto I slammed the hood shut on the SUV and pulled the car back  into the garage.

As I pulled in, I noticed my wife standing at the door watching all that had taken place.  With a little bit of disgust, she asked, “What are you so angry about?”  I very sheepishly responded with the reason and told her goodbye again and drove away.

Now as I have gotten to my office and read from Matthew 5, I am reflecting on this scenario.  Why did I get so angry?  What difference did it make to my wife?  There are a few things that come to mind.

Why I was angry:

1.  Frustration – my plans were frustrated.  I wasn’t able to carry out my intended activity as I had wanted.  We get angry when our plans don’t work out.  Every time I focus on the obstacle I get frustrated and angry.  Instead I need to relax and take it in stride…realizing that God works in all things…even the obstacles I face.

2.  Control – I hate it when things are out of my control.  The vehicle that wouldn’t start was a threat to my control.  I didn’t like not having control.  I did, at least, have a solution that I could apply.  However, when the hood on the SUV kept shutting, it was as if it was saying to me, “Ha ha, you’re not as in control as you think you are.”  (Crazy, I know).  But, the reality is we aren’t ever in complete control.  There are always elements of our lives outside the realm of our control.  The good news is that I am in the hand of God.  He has control of my destiny.  That’s all that matters.

What difference did it make to my wife:

1.  Salt – my influence was negative.  Now she knows I’m human and doesn’t set me up on some pedestal as if I should never mess up.  However, what I do has an impact upon her.  Will my anger, although not directed toward her, influence her day?  Possibly.  As salt, I flavor my environment.  My seasoning needs to add grace, not bitterness.  Although we often think of Matthew 5:13-16 as pertaining to our witness to the lost world (and it does), shouldn’t we be salt and light to our family as well…even our saved family?  Which leads me to the final point.

2.  Light – my light shines for a reason.  It is to point others to my heavenly Father.  I had just prayed with my wife before leaving the house and asked God to use us today for His glory.  Now, when faced with a minor frustration, I had dimmed my light in the eyes of my wife and as a result, she didn’t see a reflection of the Father.

I need to remember, in the frustrations of life, I must go “Light” with the “Salt.”  What I mean is, my light needs to shine bright as I am functioning to flavor my world…even the world of my closest relationships.

Now…I think I need to call my wife.

Matthew 5:13-16

13 “You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it useful again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless. 14 You are the light of the world – like a city on a mountain, glowing in the night for all to see. 15 Don’t hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand and let it shine for all. 16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.

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