Irritable

Published on Nov 2nd, 2016 by Pastor Ed Hlad | 0
Irritable

Irritable

My wife and I just got back from vacation. We went to Branson, Missouri. As one friend put it, “The home of every washed up Lawrence Welk singer”. That is probably true except that most of those folks have passed on and passed the baton to a number of tribute singers. I often wonder (ok, I don’t but it sets up a good joke) if after I am gone there will be a tribute Ed Hlad preacher at JBC? “Today we have special guest who will be preaching Ed’s sermon from Acts 17”. I am sure that will bring in as big a crowd as the John Denver tribute guy did…his shown was every day at 10:00 a.m. Anyway, my point in bringing all of that up was that as soon as we got off the plane in Philadelphia we were swept up in this sea of people moving way too fast toward a baggage claim area where they would have to sit and wait anyway. Not only were these people all in a hurry, they were also very irritable. Grumpy. Bothered. Give it any name you want. Whatever it was, it was unpleasant. I had just had a week of smiling, friendly, talk to you too much people and now we were back on the East Coast with the irritables (not to be confused with the deplorables).

Made me think of how quick to be irritable that I am. I remember being in Utah when one guy sat through a whole green light and never moved. He wasn’t paying attention. What amazed me is that no one blared a horn at the guy. I was in Trenton and someone blew their horn at me because they didn’t think I was going fast enough through a light. People seem far less irritable out West. I was convicted of my irritability when I read in I Cor 13:5 where love is defined as not being irritable. Irritability is a lack of love. Lack of love toward God as I do not trust that this obstacle in my life is given to me by him to conform me to the image of Jesus. Lack of love toward those irritating me. God died for those souls that are getting on my nerves and yet I just see them as blocking some selfish goal that I have.

I must admit that I don’t usually think that righteously. Usually I make excuses for irritability. I am tired. I don’t feel well. I told them that three times and they have not listened. I am stressed. All of those things do effect me and make it more difficult for me to show love but they do not excuse my irritability nor are they the real reason for me being bothered. I am bothered because I selfishly am willing to be grumpy in order to get what I want. I might just want some peace and quiet. Nothing sinful about that. But using coarse words or being short with my family who wants noise and excitement is sinful.

God has made me holy through Jesus. Being holy every day is a different story. While I am grateful that God sees me holy and blameless because I am in Jesus (Eph 1:4) I understand that I must strive everyday to be what God has made me. I will admit though, that I have not often thought about putting off irritability. It just hasn’t been in my top three to five sins to deal with. After all, it is my East Coast privilege. It is part of our charm. But being irritable is not very Christlike and it certainly does not display the glory of God. It is born out of a selfish, loveless heart and it something that God has redeemed me from. So while I may be betraying my fellow Jerseyites, today I will seek God’s work in my life concerning my irritability. But if some of you choose to point out other areas of weakness in my life….fugeddaboutit.

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