Have you ever pulled up to a four way stop at the same exact time that another car has? And then you and the other driver awkwardly sit and look at each other waiting for the other one to go. S then you both start to giant the same time…more awkwardness. Followed by each of you waving the other driver on-at the same time. Now what? So you both start to move again….and the awkwardness soars to a new high. (Or am I the only person on earth who experiences these types of awkward occurrences?) Typically, in these situations, I am the driver who is willing to yield to the other driver and wait. I’m also the weirdo in the grocery who will let someone go in front of me if they have fewer things in their cart….so that I don’t hold them up with my overflowing cart of groceries. I yield to total strangers. And that’s easy, and it feels good. So then why is it sometimes so stinking hard to yield to those around us that we love. Not just in small, superficial ways…but in the big meaningful ways. If we truly love and care about someone, shouldn’t we yield to them. The dictionary defines yield as to give up, surrender, or submit. This can have so many meanings in our every day lives. Within the boundaries of our own families, are we yielding to each other? Do we hold out for what our selfish nature desires, or do we surrender to what is good for the whole family? Am I holding a grudge based on my hurt feelings, or am I giving them up in hope that relationships may be restored and grow? Do we submit ourselves to what God requires of us or do we attempt to maintain control and do it our way? Relationships are difficult. They are dynamic and challenging, but so vital and rewarding.
And if we (talking mostly to me) have trouble at times yielding to those we love…how much more difficult do we make the process of yielding to others…the poor, the homeless, forgotten. And what about our enemies!? We are commanded to love our neighbor. We are commanded to love our enemies. I believe that part of that process of love is yielding…submitting, surrendering. What if I gave up -even occasionally- my $6.00 cup of coffee (venti, quad, skinny, french vanilla latte) and blessed someone else in a small way. What if I surrendered some of my time to just sit and talk with someone who feels like they don’t matter. Am I willing to yield to others? This is a challenge that I know I am not alone in facing. I think if we were all honest, we could probably find areas that we have been less than willing to yield. Are we holding grudges over past hurts? Are we stubborn with our time, our money, even our emotions? I know that I am a work in progress and that I have many strengths but I also have many flaws. I thank God that He loves me…enough to die for me even with all my imperfections. And because of that sacrifice and my love for Him, I want to be more willing to yield.
James 3:17 But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.