I get a daily quote e-mail. Today was so good, I had to share it. It comes from Thomas Kempis.
“Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.”
I am both inspired and convicted by this one. I am convicted because I see so many times in my life where I have not done this. There are so many times that I have been angry and hateful and spiteful to people only to find out that I am no better, just in different ways. Or still more often, to find out that I am far worse in exactly the same ways.
I am inspired because I hope that in once again looking at my history, I might find myself in a situation where I would have become angry and remember how many times my anger has been self righteous and wrong in the past. Maybe now that I have finally started taking some baby steps towards apologizing when I realize I’ve been angry with someone for no good reason, I can take the next step. Maybe now I can get to a place where I don’t have to apologize so often. Of course I know me…and that’s not going to be easy. One headache at work, one day with a cold, and I’ll be right back at it with my snippy sarcastic attitude. But I’ll hold on to the thought that if I notice that I’ve been horrible, then I can fix it. If I never notice it, then I’ll go on being horrible forever (see R.A.W.’s “Cosmic Schmuck Principal”).
“Good sense makes a man slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.” – Proverbs 19:11