The phenomenon of resentment occurs with frenetic routine in the workplace, just as much as in the family. Decisions are made, often without ‘enough’ consultation, or to the dissatisfaction of those on the receiving end, anyway, and casualties are left strewn over the canvas of the relational boxing rings of life.
For such a pathetic life response—to resent—there is a remarkably powerful temptation to engage in it.
I don’t care how ‘mature’ you are, or how vibrant the Holy Spirit is in your life, temptation to resentment is a thing you’ll never overcome, not in the ultimate sense, in this lifetime.
There stands a quantum spiritual challenge.
Resentment is a spiritual challenge borne of pride; humility is the only way to combat it.
Wary are the Humbly Blessed – Blessed are the Humble Wary
The very feature of humility—the paradoxical champion of the spiritual life—is its honest ability to admit its limitations.
The mature person has no problem noting the threat of resentment; they see it ever present, mainly because those who love have to care. They owe life that much. Maturity carries with it the ability to accept responsibility, to maintain trust to the delivery of those responsibilities, and to be kept accountable. (Resentment is not something aiding any of that.)
The humble are inherently blessed because they’re wary. This is one indicator of the fear of the Lord: to know just how close sin is and to avoid same.
If we understand, then, that resentment is both ever-close and a vast folly, we can imagine a metaphorical gulf between the presence of problems causing resentment and the spiritual freedom to let them go.
Bridging distant realities is our spiritual task; one simple with wary humility, but made incredibly difficult in pride—wanting our own way.
Whether it’s a workplace matter or one in the family, including marriage, it bodes us well to remember resentments win us little favour. They send rapport into the sour depths; things can’t end well from there until the resentment’s dealt with.
Better to not arrive there in the first place! Prevention’s better than cure.
The idea behind all resentments is change.
The quicker we appreciate that life will change, that potential resentments will come, and that we can’t win them all, the better we can accept the unacceptable in life.
It can be seen that God is arranging and re-arranging the deck chairs of life, such to compel us to grow in the humility that will achieve, for us, the agility required for maintaining spiritual equilibrium.
That’s both maturity and wisdom.
© 2011 S. J. Wickham.
Graphic Credit: Jack Briant’s “My Life After AA” blog.