We all know that one person who is consumed with focusing on the negative. They are always bent on seeing the bad in situations or looking for the faults in others. Quite frankly, someone who is all drama.
We can’t expect to have happy beautiful lives if we are that person- always seeing the glass as half empty or presuming the bad in every situation or using people’s faults against them as a means of manipulation. For some this is a security blanket pointing out others faults in order to draw focus away from their own or draw attention to how good they are themselves. For some it is an issue or jealousy, but always, always it is a heart problem.
How do I know if I am that person? Let’s get honest with ourselves here:
Do I always seem to be focusing on the bad in a situation?
Do I twist a situation to make is seem worse than it really is?
Do I presume that others have evil motives when I really don’t know?
Do I use gossip or criticism to gain control of others?
Am I genuinely concerned about the people I focus on or am I looking for the latest gossip?
Do I point out others faults simply to draw attention to myself?
At times, we all have a natural tendency toward drama. If left unchecked, we could become this Debbie Downer that no one wants to be around. The key is really being honest with ourselves about our behavior, and really wanting to do what is right in the eyes of God.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
If we really were to think on those things at all times, would we have time for gossip? Problems will arise. We are all humans, but if we are thinking on the things of God, it will be a whole lot easier to handle drama or gossip on a loving way and treat one another with grace.
Think about all the bad things God could say about us. He knows every bad thing we have ever done. He could certainly hold that against us if he wanted to.
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
I am not perfect, and neither are you, and it would do us a lot of good to remember that. God has given us amazing grace. That certainly doesn’t mean he turns his head away from our sin or that he allows us to get away with bad behavior. He dealt with our sin very severely in Christ on the cross. However, it does mean that all that he does in dealing with our sin as his children is to bring us back into his arms.
Our grace for others is directly proportional to our understanding of the grace we have received from God. When we hear a bit of gossip or a way in which someone else has stumbled, are we genuinely concerned with their relationship with God and doing what we can to bring them back to Jesus? Or are we concerned with having something to tell our friends or hold over someone else’s head? Will we use it as a source to draw attention to ourselves or to Jesus Christ?
Maybe you are thinking, “Yeah, I wish so-and-so would read this. They can’t seem to keep me out of their drama.” Well, just like they have to stop focusing on the negative in life, so do you. You have to stop focusing on them. Bottom line is that you can not control the actions of others. You can only control your own actions. Everyone is ultimately responsibly for their own stuff. If you seem to be stuck in someone else’s dramatic episode all the time, pray for them, seek godly counsel about the situation, kindly speak to that person about what is going on, and if you can’t ever seem to stay out of their drama, stay away from them.
There is nothing more tiring than being the center of someone else’s gossip. But life is what you focus on. Start thinking about pure and lovely and true things, focus on your relationship with God and what he has called you to do. Focus on all the blessings God has given you. Focus on all the people you love and that genuinely love you. Stop feeding their addiction by allowing yourself to be affected by their sin.
Stop watering the weeds in your life, and start watering the flowers.
If you discover that you are the source of drama or manipulation, big or small, ask God to forgive you, cleanse you, and remove it from your life. Ask Him to retrain your thought life, habits, and attitudes. Consider counseling with a godly accountability partner. Write down areas where you can improve your behavior in your relationships. No matter how enslaved to wrong behavior you may feel, God is bigger, His grace is greater, and He is always able and willing to give us more grace to help us become a radiant, shining example of His unending grace and beauty. Trust Him with your heart today and every day.