Get Over It At Home

Don’t get all worked up about something if you are not going to do something to resolve it. The advice you need if you have become one of those who rave on about things is, “Get over it!”

I opened this subject in a previous article titled “Get Over It”, and now I am elaborating on the theme, to make it more practically applicable to everyday life. To best understand what I am explaining here, be sure to read that first article.

Good truth is truth that works in everyday life. You know you have conquered something when you can live it out in the home. Your marriage and family are the testing ground for all your theories. If you think you’ve changed, but still act the same at home, then you are deluding yourself. So I’m now focusing the need to “Get over it!” on the home.

Worked Up

People get worked up about things that have stung them or found a weakness in them at heart level. We know the matter is anchored in the heart because Jesus Christ explained that what comes out of us originates in our heart.

“O generation of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” Matthew 12:34

What spills out of your lips and directs your attitudes, body language, tone of voice and so on, has its origins in your heart. If you are all worked up about something, then it is your heart that is really worked up.

Your heart harbours such things as jealousy, lust, pride, bitterness, shame, pain and so on. It is these conditions in our heart that prompt us to become preoccupied about things that happen around us. If a person is stuck on something, you can be sure that they have an issue in their heart that has caused that connection and reaction.

Heart Surgery

What you need to do is recognise that raving, complaining, endlessly rehearsing something, entertaining your fears, talking about something incessantly, or being totally distracted by something that is bothering you declares that your heart needs to be sorted out.

You need spiritual ‘heart surgery’. You need to resolve those things that stir you up, agitate you, distract you, make you afraid, and so on.

However, most people who get sucked into the vortex of some obsessive thought pattern, making them rave on, or be totally absorbed by something or other, do not immediately realise that they have a ‘heart’ issue to resolve. They tend to think that some person, action, situation, prospect, hope, or whatever, is the real issue.

Heart Issues

King Solomon, in all his wisdom, identified the heart as the real culprit in our lives, 3,000 years ago. He advised that the real issues of our life spring from our heart, not circumstances, people, experiences, fears, etc.

“Keep your heart with all diligence; for out of it (the heart) are the issues of life.” Proverbs 4:23

That thing that is distracting you, pulling your attention back to it all the time, is anchored in something inside your heart. Even though some person has done wrong, or some situation has developed, or something was said, or you went through something or other, the real issue is still inside your heart.

Many people go through terrible things and come out without being distracted, absorbed, devastated, and so on. Whatever the source of their resilience, what has happened for them is that their experience did not get hooked in their heart.

If you have gone through things and been buried in reactions, attitudes, fears, distractions, or the like, then your heart has not handled the things as successfully as you need it to. All the issues of your life are ‘heart issues’.

Do Something

I pointed out in my first Get Over It article that you can test yourself with the question “Will you fix it?” If you don’t intend to do something about the problem or issue that has your focus then you will just have to get over it.

If you can’t fix it, such as because it is outside your scope of ability or authority, then you have no alternative but to ‘get over it’. You need to come to terms with your challenges and get on with life. You will do that most successfully with God’s grace helping you. Ask God for His grace to carry you through the challenging situations.

If you can fix it and won’t, then you have lost the right to complain or be preoccupied with it. If your pride or fear gets in the way, then you have stepped back from action. So, “Get over it!” You are now where you are because you have chosen to be there. Now, get on with life.

If you are not going to do something, then that decision exposes something more about your heart. You have a personal obstacle, such as pride, insecurity, unforgiveness, resentment, bitterness, fear of people’s opinions, or any of a range of other possibilities. You need to get spiritual heart surgery on that thing you have just discovered in your chest.

In Marriage

To put a practical edge on this, let’s consider a husband who is lazier than his wife wants him to be. She can be exasperated with him, complaining to him and about him, belittling him to others, trying to manipulate him and feeling sorry for herself because he keeps disappointing her.

The best thing the wife can do is “Get over it!”

So, let’s ask the question, “Will you fix it?” She might answer, “I’m trying to!” Her nagging and complaining may be her attempt to change him. But a few months of poor response should alert her to the fact that her complaints don’t work. If she is still nagging him after a few months, then she is losing the plot and failing to see the reality of her marriage situation.

In the case of a lazy husband the wife does not have authority to change her husband. She also probably does not have the ability to do so. So, she can exhaust herself and frustrate her husband by her continued attempts, such as nagging, but that will only damage the relationship. Alternatively she can “Get over it!”

She can hand over her disappointment to God. She can release her husband from expectations that he will be a diligent and energetic man in her life. She can recognise that she is his helper, not him her servant. She can scale down her expectations to accommodate what he is able and willing to do. She can focus on the positives in the relationship, rather than her frustrations.

But, to do those things she will need spiritual heart surgery. She will have to let God change her attitudes and resolve her inner thoughts and feelings. That will take God’s grace.

The Kids

In a case where a father is disappointed in his child because the child doesn’t meet his expectations he too has to “Get over it!” Let’s assume that a child doesn’t have the sporting, academic and personality qualities which the dad always imagined his children would have.

If we ask the dad, “Will you fix it?” he would probably say that he has tried everything he knows to do, but the kid just doesn’t come up to his expectations. If it is a matter of training and discipline then the dad has to accept responsibility for the outcome, and repent before God, asking for God’s grace and guidance to correct the situation.

If it’s a matter of natural ability, personality and interests, then the dad cannot make the difference he might want to see and so he has to come to terms with who and what the child is. The dad has to give his hopes and expectations to God. In his heart he has to forgive the child for being different to what he wanted. He has to learn how to love the child for who the child is, helping his child become the best fulfilment of who God created them to be, even if that is not what the dad wanted in a child.

If he won’t do that he will end up projecting rejection into his child. The child needs to be loved and cherished by a father who accepts them for who they are and helps them become the person God wants them to be.

Stop Complaining

You have the power to experience change. If a situation needs to be fixed and you can fix it, then stop complaining and get about the business of making a difference.

If a situation cannot be changed, or at least you don’t have the power or authority to do so, then “Get over it!” Get on with life, by experiencing change in your heart. You have the power to experience change on the inside, by bringing your heart issues to God. Let Him deal with your frustrations, fears, pride, shame, anger, unforgiveness, or whatever. Then, even if a less than happy situation exists which you cannot change, you will still be able to get on with life and be free from distraction and debilitation.

So, let me share with you some profound advice for your situation…. “Get over it!”

Get Over It!

A young adult friend introduced me to the phrase “Get Over It” many years ago. She enjoyed interrupting people who were complaining about something or other with her laughing advice, “Get over it!” Many people picked up the phrase and for a while it was the most likely contribution you were to hear from some folk.

Of course, there are some things which cannot be shrugged off with a laugh and so getting over serious offence, abuse, or the like is not something that should be made fun of. But there are many things which people get worked up about without any real commitment to the issue. It may incense them or outrage their sensibilities, but still be only something they complain about, not being something they will actually do something about.

In the spirit of my first Idiot Test, which exposes the folly of taking up issues with no real intent to do anything about it, I now present some thoughts on the wise advice, “Get over it!”

Stark Raving Mad

Insanity can involve the state of being “raving mad”, where a person raves on about things that do not make sense or which are simply products of their own delusions. Paranoid people talk about dangers that do not exist. People can perceive attitudes which they think they see in others, when those others have no thought about them at all.

On a milder level, however, people can also rave, without being mad. People tend to rave about things that impact their thoughts. They may keep talking about their fears, sense of offence, misgivings, or the like. Because those thoughts loom large in their mind, or heart, they end up speaking about those things all the time. To other people with other things to do and think about it seems that the person is raving on and on about things that they should have dropped out of mind.

This is where “Get over it!” comes into its own.

Preoccupation is Biblical

The Bible speaks about the issue of ‘raving’, by pointing to the source of that obsessive talk. The words which come out of our mouth originate in our heart. If we have issues in our heart, at that deeper level of our life, then we will tend to talk about those things, like water bubbling up from a spring.

“A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45

Heart Monitor

Since the heart is the source of what comes out of us, spilling those things which fill up our inner thoughts, then we are wise to monitor our heart. And the very words we speak are as good a piece of equipment as anything else.

If you tend to rave about things stop to check why you can’t let that thing go. If you have unforgiveness toward someone, you will tend to talk about them and what they did. If you have fear for your future you will tend to talk about what could go wrong. If you have fantasies about your future you will tend to rave on about all the things you imagine could happen.

Once you have resolved your heart issues, of offence, unforgiveness, fear, delusion, insecurity, shame, or whatever, then you will also stop raving on so much.

Will You Fix It?

Here’s a way to prompt yourself about dealing with issues. It might be unwise to apply this to your family and friends, since they might take offence at your approach. So, start with yourself. Maybe in time you will have earned the right to try this on others.

Take the issue you are raving about and ask, “Well, are you going to do something about it?”

If you are not actually working on a solution, then all you are doing is venting empty words, to express your feelings. That process is vain. It does not create a solution. It does not bring greater clarity. It does not let you get past the issues.

So, “Will you fix it?” If not, then……. “Get over it!”

If you are not going to do anything to resolve the situation then the wisest thing you can do is to put the thing behind you and out of mind. Get over it! If you are a victim and you intend to stay a victim, then stop complaining about being a victim. If you have suffered an irreparable damage, then, since it is irreparable, get on with life. Stop raving about things you aren’t going to change!

Can’t Let Go

Once you’ve faced the “Will You Fix It?” question, and the instruction to “Get over it!” you then come to some deeper insight into yourself.

It may be that you aren’t going to fix it and you can’t get over it. So now you can see your real problem. You are caught in a trap, with no way out. You are not going to solve the problem, and you are not going to get over it. So you are probably camping on the ground of ‘self-pity’. You have probably chosen to be miserable and to make other people’s lives miserable too.

Of maybe your pride is in the way. You are going to trash your life, because of your pride. Or maybe it’s a mater of unforgiveness. Which ever way you look at it, the real problem is not the thing you are complaining and raving about, but YOU!

You are the problem. You won’t get on with life. You won’t find God’s grace. You won’t humble yourself, forgive your offenders, love your enemies, or find God’s help to solve the problem. You miserable creature! You are an enemy of God and all the people who come in contact with you. You are totally self-absorbed and don’t care how you burden others in your self-indulgent existence.

Get Grace

God’s word tells us that God’s grace is more than enough. It is sufficient for any challenge. You don’t have to be a victim, or be obsessive, or be self-absorbed. There is enough grace to totally transform your life and circumstances.

So, get your hands on God’s grace. And you get that by being humble. God gives grace to the humble.

“And he said to me, My grace is sufficient for you: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest on me.” 2Corinthians 12:9

“But God gives more grace. Wherefore he says, God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6
Word of Advice

You may need me to spell out how this “Get Over It” thing works in day to day life, especially in the home. So I’ll write another article on this for you, called, Get Over It At Home, to help put practical legs onto this important concept. Look out for that article. Meanwhile, here’s my word of advice.

Are you facing a challenge at the moment? I have some advice for you. If you seriously respond to that advice and think through your reactions to it you should get a good look at your heart and know what to ask God to do in you.

Now, here’s my awesome word of wisdom. Here is the best advice I may be able to give you in your current situation. Here is the word you have been waiting for….

“Get over it!”

The Domestic Bride

I have met some lovely young brides over the years and been delighted by the heart-felt desire of each one to please her husband. The home and its domestic challenges is an area where many brides long to excel and through which they plan to bless their husband.

Yet the domestic role of a bride is also an area where some misunderstanding and unclear concepts can lead the couple into strife. So this post is for the domestic bride.

Beautiful Bride with a Beautiful Heart

I know that not all young brides are as wonderful as others, but I want to pause for a moment and commend the many amazing and sweet young ladies I have met over the years who earnestly long to delight their husband. Some of those lucky men have been ignorant of how blessed they are. Some of them have gone on to bruise the tender heart of their darling bride.

So, to you amazing and gorgeous young ladies, I commend you for your eager and delightful intention to bless your young man. Mankind is blessed to have the undeserved devotion that you give. I pray that God bless each of you with the rewards of His grace, even if your wonderfully blessed husband does not realise how privileged he is.

Tender Hearts Get Bruised

I am sorry that it is so, but tender hearts do get bruised. Insensitive young men and starry-eyed young brides end up with the pain of disappointment, hurts and misunderstanding. Sometimes the bruises are so sore that the marriage never regains the innocence and tenderness of its initial hopes and dreams.

With the progress of time many marriages completely lose their wonder and delight. Both bride and groom draw back from their innocent hopes and their willing abandonment. Many a cranky older couple started out as two tender hearts longing for things they could never find. I will look at this subject from another angle at some time, with reference to the ‘spirit of the marriage’.

Understand the Problems

Entering into marriage and this wonderful new level of relationship with some understanding may help you. So allow me to cover some points that should help you understand the problem.

In simple terms the main problem stems from the bride’s longing to serve and bless, and the husband’s ignorance of what he wants and how things should be administered. It is hard to effectively serve and bless someone when that service is ill defined.

The Dangerous Assumptions

In marriage, the easy assumptions to make include such things as the idea that you are both wonderfully compatible. Another assumption is that it will just work out fine, all by itself. Then there is the assumption by the man that the woman will somehow instinctively do what pleases him, and the assumption by the woman that the man will instinctively be delighted by what she gives him.

All of these assumptions are dangerous, because all of them are most likely not true. They set the couple up for surprises, disappointment, argument, misunderstanding and hurts.

It is unlikely that the husband has ever clearly catalogued what he likes and what he wants. He has most likely been a passenger in life’s journey, floating along with the things his mother did for him. What ever she did will be what he sees as ‘normal’, even if she is the only person on the planet who does things that way.

If a young husband was asked to explain the domestic management of a home very few would have much depth of understanding. Most husbands are happy to leave things up to their bride. However this creates several problems.

Integration Problems

Since two separate domestic worlds are brought together by the newly-weds they will have to work through the integration issues. If they have never done such a thing before then they will be surprised how many issues arise.

There are often no right and wrong ways to do things. But we each have a sense for what is familiar to us. That familiar process is the one that will “seem right” to us, even if it is the most inefficient process ever imagined. If the bride and groom have different ideas of what is ‘right’ they will end up stumbling over each other’s perceptions. It will be easy to use words like ‘right’ and ‘wrong’, bringing a sense of condemnation into the relationship. If emotions are aroused, then insults and hurtful words can spill into the situation.

Tender and fragile emotions can be damaged in such an unexpected exchange.

Many a young man has rebuked his wife for not being able to cook meals the way his mother cooked it. His tastes and expectations have been moulded by his family experience and he may not realise that there is such great diversity in food and its preparation.

The Wrong Response

When a person does not have a clear idea of what they want or how to communicate it they can leave the other person directionless. Most young husbands will tend to leave their bride to do her best, not quite sure what she is going to do and how well she is going to do it.

These husbands can’t give positive guidance in such situations so the only guidance they can give is to point out what they think to be wrong. This I call the ‘wrong’ response. And the ‘wrong’ response is the wrong response!

When a husband can only tell his bride what is wrong he is set up to bludgeon her tender hopes into a calloused heart that gives up the hope of pleasing him. Or that gives him what he wants, but without any delight on her part any more.

Negative responses produce negative responses. A husband who guides his bride by disapproval is wounding her heart.

Is There a Simple Solution?

In matters of relationship there is usually no simple solution. I will offer a few simple suggestions, but I doubt that many people will heed them. I fear that many more lovely and tender young brides are going to head down the road to hardened and hurt older wives, despite what I present here. But for the sake of the one or two who may be saved from pain by my thoughts I will venture my simple solution.

Brides should be taught to expect that everything they bring into the marriage will have to be modified. They should be encouraged to go on a two-year journey of discovery of what works best in their home. They should be told that they will face some difficult challenges in this process but that they can succeed and create the most amazing new domestic formula for them both to enjoy.

The reason I put this on the bride is because she is the one who will otherwise be hurt. Her insensitive hero is less likely to be damaged in the sort-out of domestic process than the wife is. So my simple solution aims at shielding the most vulnerable party – that beautiful young woman.

If brides enter marriage with an expectation of their need to change, and a long-term time-line for getting things sorted out, there will be less pain in finding that the couple are less compatible than she hoped. There is time for the two of them to talk and explore their options. There is no silly idealism about it working perfectly from day one.

All of that helps the tender one to be more resilient in the inevitable sorting out process.

Other Helpful Steps

Obviously it is valuable for the young husband to understand the situation and how easily he can and will offend his darling bride. Men should be challenged to expect a long season of exploration and discovery. They should expect food to taste different and things to be done differently, because they are a new family, with new horizons and new possibilities.

I recommend that the couple set up an expectation – possibly suggested to them in the pre-marriage preparation process – that the husband review the bride’s processes and program at regular intervals.

While that might sound very sexist and man-serving at first glance, allow me to show why that is valuable.

The bride is built to please her man. How can she do that if she does not become attentive to what he needs or wants? If she makes her own assumptions and assessments independently of him she may spend her whole life doing things he does not want her to do in ways he does not want her to employ. This undermines her whole design and motivation.

I have also observed that two heads are better than one. I have a sneaking suspicion that I am not the first to observe that fact. When any person acts for their whole life without the benefit of additional input and review they are in danger of doing the wrong things the wrong way for a long time. The most valuable and understanding contributor to the wife’s situation should be her husband. So having him give input in a regulated and consistent fashion is logical and appropriate.

And I also recommend that young men be given at least some understanding of how to protect the tender heart of their beloved. The pushing of the feminist notion that men and women are equal and almost identical has robbed men of appreciation for the woman’s needs and denied women the loving care that they are due.

The Heart of Your Child

It is vital that you train the heart of your children. However it is popular to ignore this essential process and give in to shallow alternatives. Since many young parents have not thought these issues through I am penning these notes as a guide to parents.

The Heart of the Matter

The most important part of your child’s development is the training of their heart. While we may not be aware of what is going on inside other people, including our children, the Bible tells us that God looks on the heart.

“But the LORD said to Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD sees not as man sees; for man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” 1Samuel 16:7

God’s prophet, Samuel, did what people naturally do. He looked on external things. God accurately accused men of taking notice of external things – “man looks on the outward appearance”. That is why people have to take ‘first impressions’ seriously and why image is such a big deal for worldly people. It should not be so for those who love and follow God, but sadly appearance and image is a major focus of some churches today.

Since God looks on your child’s heart it is essential that you make it a key focus on your attention.

The Heart of Your Child is Exposed by What Comes Out

Jesus had much to say about what comes out of the heart. He said that we are defiled by what comes out of us. He then listed a bunch of things that find their source in the human heart.

“The words which come out of the mouth come from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies” Jesus Christ, Matthew 15:18-19

Jesus is pointing here to both the words people speak and the motivations that lead them to do evil things. So wise parents will be attentive to the spontaneous expressions from their children and also from the behaviour patterns the children display.

A winning smile on the face of a child can be deceptive. Sweet words of promise and nicety may be a cover for wrong intentions. In the same way that adults can be expert at this level of deception, some children know how to play up to their parents’ expectations.

Key Lessons For the Heart

The heart is troubled by the presence of foolishness, which Solomon warns us is bound in the heart of every child (Proverbs 22:15). So it is important for each parent to respect the particular process that God prescribes for removing that foolishness. The prescribed process is to use the rod of correction on the child.

Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction will drive it far from him.” Solomon, Proverbs 22:15

Obedience is a key test of the child’s heart. If a child refuses to obey then they have foolishness. So getting the child to promptly obey the parent is a key heart training process. This involves them submitting to the parent’s authority. In that process they learn to fear the Lord, giving respect to God’s requirement that they obey their parents.

Games and Tricks Don’t Train the Heart

Some parents think that they are doing quite well if they get the desired action from the child. But it is not the action that is the most important. What is important, as we saw earlier, is the heart of the child. God does not look on the outward evidence but on the heart.

If you instruct a child to eat their food and the child is reluctant to obey, then a matter of the heart has been exposed. The child’s rebellious or independent attitude is a more serious matter than the nutritional value of the meal.

Many parents, however, become distracted with the external element, getting the food into the child. They can completely miss the much more serious issue of the child’s heart. Clever parents can resort to games to get the child to eat. “Let’s pretend that the spoon is a train and your mouth is a tunnel. Let the train into the tunnel.”

Such games may be fun, but they set the parent and child up for future pain. The child’s heart is left in a rebellious state, even though all the food is eaten.

The same is true when a parent tricks a child into doing the right thing, or fitting in with the parent’s plans. Games and fun, cute as they may be in the hands of clever parents, have no place in testing or training the child’s heart.

The most mature and complete heart training is evident when there is every reason to disobey or to get away with doing wrong, and yet the person insists and persists in doing what is right.

Tough Choices Make for Strong Character

When parents rescue their children from tough choices they undermine the child’s character. Tough choices make for strong character.

The child who must stand by his post, while others get to do fun things, or taunt him, or who is otherwise suffering in order to be there, will develop much stronger character than the child who is given every opportunity to cheat on their character.

False compassion can prompt some parents to remove the tough choices and hard situations from their child’s life. Such emotion is called ‘false’ compassion because it is not true love at all. It masquerades as compassion but it harms the child, so it cannot be real love.

You are Allowed to Play Games

Please note that I am not saying every moment of your child’s life should be a tough moment with tough choices. There is plenty of room for fun, games and play. You are welcome to play ‘aeroplanes’ and fly the food into your child’s mouth or to make cleaning up the room into a fun race against the clock.

The tough choices are made at strategic moments and are then built upon. But once the tough moment is past it is time for celebration and enjoyment of life. The problem will come when your child is never challenged to learn and their heart is not trained.

Insist that they Learn

Parents, be diligent to ensure that each of your children has learned to obey you, to submit to authority and to fear God. You will need to remain attentive to their heart, through what they say and how that is backed up by the attitudes and actions.

Insist that they learn the lessons. Don’t give in, just because they are crying, or complaining. There is much more at stake than their temporary responses.

Little One 3

Here is another “Daddy Dialogue” to a little child. Parents may wish to offer something like this to their children.

“Sweetheart, you are such a precious gift into this home. God loves us SO much that He has given YOU to us, to make us so very happy. You are special and precious and mummy and I thank God for giving you to us as our little child.

You know that we love you and that God wants us to train you so you will be everything He wants you to be. But there’s something else I want to tell you about too.

There is a naughty angel who ran away from God. That bad angel wants to help people do the wrong thing, so that God’s heart will be sad. And one of the things that bad angel does is tell God that good people are bad.

That bad angel has already been talking to God about you. He says that you really aren’t a nice person at all. He says that you will do bad things and disobey your mummy and daddy. He says you will be greedy and selfish and that you will try to get your way when you can.

God laughs at the devil’s lies. God knows that He created you to be a wonderful person who loves God and does what is right.

So that’s why I am telling you about this now. Every time you do something wrong the devil will jump up and down and clap his hands. He will laugh at God and say, “See, I told you so!” And God will be sad.

But God knows that even when you do wrong things you can always ask Him to forgive you. He is always happy to forgive you if you are sad about what you have done. When God forgives you it is as if you never ever did the wrong thing at all.

God knows that you will do some wrong things so He is not worried about what the devil says. God wants you to learn how to be strong and He also wants mummy and me to train you.

Mummy and daddy have to train you by punishing you when you do something wrong. We do that because we love you and want to take any foolish ideas out of your heart, so it will be easier and easier for you to make God happy.

Let’s pray together now and tell God that we are not going to do the bad things the devil wants us to do.

“Lord God, thank You that You love us. We know that the devil doesn’t like us and he wants us to do bad things. But we make up our mind that we will only do right things. If we fail and do something that we should not do we will ask You to forgive us. We will ask for Your strength so we can resist all those evil things.

Thank You for loving us and helping us be good people who are happy and free. We ask this prayer in Jesus’ name. Amen.”