The Speech of Our Actions
By Charlotte Riegel –
As soon as I entered my son’s house, I knew he was distraught. His actions of frustration and his angry words immediately sent me into default mode of ‘run and hide/get out of here quick.’
I grew up with an angry father who raged often and always left something broken in the wake of his fury. Sometimes it was furniture or some other inanimate object left in pieces. Always, the nerves and peace of mind of everyone within earshot of his outburst were shattered. Even in my older age, that childhood fear subtly threatens to paralyze me and subconsciously controls my actions whenever I am near anyone in a rage.
I quickly completed my predetermined business at his house while he slouched in a chair texting on his cell phone, ignoring me. Then I left with a muffled ‘bye.’
An email from my son awaited me at home. It’s message surprised me. He felt as if I had pushed him away, rejected him, when I was responding to his body language that told me he wanted to be left alone.
It was apparent both of us had misunderstood the body language of the other person. I had jumped into my default ‘get out of here quick’ mode when in fact he was emotionally distressed and needed a hug from me as well as an ear to help him process some challenges he was facing.
QUOTE: “I know you think you know what I said. I’m not sure you realize what you heard is not what I meant.”
PRAYER: Dear God, Thank You for the relationships in our lives. Give us the words, actions and heart so that we may love as You do.