Today is a good day to do a little dusting! In Matthew 10:10 Jesus said if anyone rejects you or does not welcome you, shake the dust off your feet. Move on to the next town. What does that have to do with me? He was talking to His disciples. Well, he is also talking to me.
There people in my life who no longer welcome me. They no longer want to hear what I have to say. They no longer want to participate with me. Walking away and moving on is never MY first option. I do not give up on anything easily. That is both a curse and a blessing I suppose. I drive myself crazy trying to figure them out. I want a solution. I want things fixed and settled. That’s my personality. I just don’t care to have unfinished business in my life. Yet, there are people who prefer to engage in passive aggressive behaviors. They will not explicitly state their demands, they avoid accountability and confrontation. At some point they must have received a message that it’s inappropriate to show anger or true feelings, they get their way by other measures. They’ve even been socialized in to believing that being indifferent, being silent, being passive aggressive is a genuine Christian behavior.
Indifference, silence, passive aggression all are maddening to me. Hostility has life at least. Indifference is insipid, draining, debilitating. Most times, like right now, I don’t shake the dust off my feet very easily. No, I go on trying for way to long past the time to quit. I lose my perspective. I take it all to heart. I lose my joy. I am inhaling dust and it is choking me, I cannot breath. I am drowning. So often times I put myself in the jury box or better yet I sit as the judge. My prayer today is that I remove myself from these positions. I must make a choice NOT to judge those who have rejected me or who are indifferent toward me. That’s God’s job, not mine. Only God knows why they are so passive or so frustrating and silent. All I am required to do is “shake the dust off”. Move on.
Dust clings. Dust covers. Dust chokes.
I am reminding myself again that Jesus said in Matthew 10:10 to shake the dust off your feet. What in the world would this mean to me exactly?
Rejection. Don’t dwell on it. Don’t let it settle on you. Don’t play it over and over again in my head. Shake the dust off!
Frustration. Don’t sit in it, don’t grovel around it int. Shake the dust off!
Don’t assume it is all about ME and take it to heart. Remember only God knows that stuff. Shake the dust off!
Failure and rejection are not the same thing. Shake the dust off!
If we don’t shake the dust off we will carry it. It will embitter relationships, sour friendships; sap energy, leak hope. We have to shake the dust off!
There is a choice I can make and that is a choice NOT to be angry with indifferent people. I have no idea what makes them so bafflingly indifferent. I can make an effort not to be surprised or devastated by indifference in people. I will choose not to be bitter. I will shake the dust off! Dust is dead skin, dry earth. Dust is death. Only God can create life out of dust and ashes. That is not my job. I am to shake the dust off my feet. By doing this I am letting God do what only God can do. My dust shaking is in essence a prayer that God will do a miracle my making beauty arise from ashes. I am allowing him to take full control and from the dust I have shaken off my feet He can now create something from it. He is God.
So what do I do with my pain, grief, sadness, the loss that comes from walking away (dusting)? After all I am walking away from a person, a relationship, a friendship with the job unfinished. The dust not settled. This is exactly what I am going to do: continue praise God while I am dusting. No need to lament on failure, or dwell on the silence and the rejection. I will praise God who made all things out of the dust of the earth, and still does.