Replacing My Frustration Face
By: Kristine Brown
"The one who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.” - John 7:38 HCSB
I stood across the desk from the woman at the Department of Motor Vehicles office, noticeably irritated. She’d delivered news I didn’t want to hear, and now she braced herself as she waited for my response. I didn’t know who I was most frustrated with. My son, for leaving his wallet at home on our first trip here to get his license renewed. Myself, for not calling ahead for the hours of operation on our second trip. Or her, now that we arrived on our third trip to the office to discover yet another setback.
And if I’m frustrated, everyone will know it. Because it shows all over my face.
Whatever the reason behind it, she could feel my frustration even without words spoken. This innocent employee could see it in my facial expressions. I definitely wasn’t letting the light of Jesus show on my countenance that day.
One of my favorite verses is Ephesians 4:29, where Paul gives this advice to believers, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” I remember a time in my life when these words pierced my heart and caused me to pray fiercely about watching my words. I wanted to be someone who built others up. Offered encouragement. Brought joy to those around her.
But I didn’t realize that even though I learned to keep my mouth closed, I hadn’t dealt with the source. The frustration was still there; it was just escaping through my countenance instead of my words. I needed to be so filled with the love of Jesus that living water would flow from deep inside, spilling over on everyone around me.
“The one who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.” (John 7:38 HCSB)
Frustration is a heart issue. We misplace our focus when we blame others, our circumstances, or ourselves for causing it. Those perceived triggers are not the source of our frustration. Once we realize this, we will be able to release the tension in our frustrated faces and find peace that will shine through us.
I resolved to let my final trip to the DMV be a different story. Now that I had discovered the secret to letting go of frustration, I replaced those feelings with an everlasting joy that can only come from Jesus.
Let’s commit today to replace our frustration faces with streams of living water. With our Savior as our life-giving source, we can truly be an encouragement to those around us. “But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:14 ESV)
Discover more about letting go of frustration with this resource from Kristine: One Sentence Prayers for Letting Go of Frustration. You’ll find weekly encouragement to help you “become more than yourself through God’s Word” at her website, kristinebrown.net. Kristine Brown is the author of the book, Over It. Conquering Comparison to Live Out God’s Plan, and the upcoming companion devotional for teen girls.
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