Misguided persistence

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“Stop nagging!” We have all heard it and we have may have said it to someone else. If you look in Webster, the definition is “persistently annoying or finding fault with someone”.

When I think about nagging, I am reminded of summer evenings, sitting outside trying to relax while being persistently and relentlessly pursed by a gnat. It buzzes around your face, your ears and nose, awaiting an opportunity to settle in and bite. It is this incessant, relentless pursuit that sends you running for the house or bug spray. You will do whatever it takes to make it stop.

That is exactly how I have found myself behaving with certain family members at times. They won’t sit still and just do what I want, what I think is best, so I continue with the constant buzzing, thinking I will get a different result. Meanwhile, my victim wants to shoo me away, to render me speechless or probably even smack me at times. When they think they have peace, there I am again. There is a reason the book of Proverbs says, “it’s better to live in a corner of a housetop than in a house shared with a quarrelsome wife”.

I used to plan a big long perfect tailored speech, assured that if I could just get my victim to sit still long enough, they would finally get it! They would finally open their eyes to the truth I was so anxious for them to discover. Now, might be a good time to clarify that I am not talking about teaching your children wrong or right, or lovingly steering them in the right direction. I’m not even talking about a good discussion with your spouse. Remember the definition for nagging is annoying and finding fault.

The constant nagging wears people down. It never results in good. You never figure out just the right way to verbalize things to get your way. You ultimately do more damage with your words, especially when they accuse and find fault. Remember, it’s just annoying buzzing. Eventually, they will learn to run and hide.

I believe that God looks at the heart. For example, say that I am firmly convinced that my child should do something because I think it’s in their best interest. And say that I am right in this case, because I’m not always. What if she does it for me, but only for me. That’s nice and it feels good for the moment but has her heart changed on the matter? If her heart hasn’t changed, will it last? If she hasn’t received the conviction for herself, in her spirit, she won’t be doing it because its something she believes in. So, in turn it doesn’t feel genuine, because it isn’t. I might feel good, but she doesn’t because she is betraying her heart. She may be wrong, but until she realizes it, it doesn’t matter.

I have learned the hard way that I get more flies with honey. If I just go about the business of loving my family members, like Jesus does (unconditionally), and pray for them, eventually things work out and never the way I would have done it.

What if I did win? What if my nagging paid off? Then I would feel worthy of the credit. I did it, I fixed her. But, the glory belongs to God and He will have it.

So, the more quickly we learn to surrender outcomes to the One who truly knows best, the easier it will be for us to relinquish our delusions of having control. When someone you love makes a choice for themselves or because God touched their heart about something, a genuine change occurs. This is between them and God. We all have to learn most things and certainly some of the most important ones for ourselves. If we truly believe how much God loves us and ours, we can find the faith to believe in a good outcome while we are waiting.


Comments

  1. This should be in a book in a major book store in the Spiritual and self help sections, because everyone could benefit from this wisdom.

  2. Nancy Daffin says:

    Yes they could Ronnie ❤️

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