By Mary Sefzik –
Mosquitos—one of the most annoying summertime pests. They can make a meal off of you before you have time to devour your slice of juicy watermelon. By the end of the evening your legs are covered with those tell-tale itchy welts—summertime souvenirs. The constant urge to scratch becomes all-consuming. The more you scratch the hotter and redder those bites become. You question whether an evening outside was worth the itchy aftermath.
Some people are like mosquitos. They lite, they bite, and they leave you to deal with the after effects. They barge into your life uninvited spouting a slew of stinging remarks.
“You’ll never get it right.”
“That’s the worst thing I’ve ever heard.”
“You can’t do this job.”
Then they leave and go about the rest of their day as if nothing ever happened. But you are left with a big red welt of emotional hurt—damaged pride, less confidence in your abilities, fear of trying something new because that stinging reminder makes you believe you’ll just fail. Again.
You may go about the rest of your day with a smile on your face but the red welt from the mosquito encounter lingers just below the surface. The temptation to scratch the bite by replaying the venomous comments in your mind is all-consuming. The next time you encounter that person you’re ready. When they bite, you swat back with unkind words of your own.
How should you handle the mosquito people in your life? Like the insects, they are unavoidable. Just as you can protect yourself from the insect variety by wearing bug repellent, there are some methods you can use to lessen the sting of the bites from the people variety.
When a mosquito person is fast approaching instead of getting your swatting hand ready, shield yourself from the stings by saying a quick prayer. “Lord, control my tongue and help me take the good to heart and not let the bad ruin my day.”
After the encounter, doctor the sting by quoting scripture. “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” (Colossians 3:23 NIV), or “‘I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future'” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV).
Keep in mind God has a plan for every creature He creates—even the mosquitos.
Prayer: Be Lord of my tongue today and help my words be constructive instead of stinging. Teach me to handle criticism in a way which honors You.