I have a friend who says that worries carry a lot more meaning in our heads than if we actually release them into conversation. Basically, I think she means that we can stew about something in our heads and make it a really big deal. We can make mountains out of molehills. Then we talk to someone about what we are worrying about and it seems not to be as big of a deal. So many times after I have vented a frustration or a worry to a friend, I will say something like, " I guess it doesn't seem like that big of a deal after all" or "This seems silly once I talk about it."
Today I was feeling overwhelmed about something and after a few conversations, I just got to worrying. I felt defeated in something before I really have even begun. I made a mountain in my mind out of a molehill - really more like an anthill. Later, I called a friend who is just solid in her advice. She is positive and best of all - a good listener. She listened and asked good questions as I got what was in my head out into the phone. After our conversation, I felt so much better. I felt like what I was worried about was really blown out of proportion in my head and that I had made a much bigger deal out of it than necessary. Good thing I didn't call someone and rant because of my own insecurities.Too many times I speak too soon about something and my words hurt because I have not thought through them. I am living proof of what James speaks about and the spark that can set a forest fire ablaze. Many a forest fires I have started with the spark of my fiery tongue.
So, ugh! Words. Keep them in or let them out? I am going to go out on a limb here and say that it is better to let them out , but let them out carefully. I didn't call my friend right away and I called a friend whom I knew would give me constructive advice. I did not call a friend to gossip about my earlier conversations or one that would only give advice that would feed my ego. I called one who would have all parties best interest in mind - not just mine.
I waited until I was calmed down a bit and most importantly prayed that God would ease my anxieties. Then I called her, we talked and I felt better.
It reminded me of Psalm 37:8 - Be still before the Lord...
I love this translation in the Message of Psalm 37:8-9 - Bridle your anger, trash your wrath, cool your pipes—it only makes things worse. Cool your pipes! Trash your wrath! I love that Eugene Peterson.
The back page of my bible is covered in verses about the tongue. Frankly, I have a big mouth. I am passionate, easily excitable and often do not think or pray before I speak. I have learned many hard lessons by this little personality flaw and God really does use them to refine me. Praise this good God who sees past my flaws, opens my eyes to the lessons and loves me the whole time. And thank goodness for the friends who let me get those big mountains out of my head and back to the molehill where it belongs.