Distraction of Defensiveness

Let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other, in step with each other. None of this going off and doing your own thing. And cultivate thankfulness.  Colossians 3:17 MSG

It was early in the morning and I walked out to get my morning coffee. Sitting on the counter was a delicious cinnamon roll. My sweet husband had gotten up early and traveled out in the cold to get me a treat for the morning. My mouth was watering as I heated the roll and fixed my coffee. I took a bite and it was not as sweet as I had anticipated. The first words out of my mouth were, “what’s wrong with this?” Not a word of gratitude to my husband for his unexpected efforts but a critical comment instead.

“Well, good morning to you too and thank you dear for the unexpected surprise!” He playfully replied.

I became defensive as I made excuses of why I responded the way I did. When I finally expressed my appreciation, it was a futile attempt.

It’s the week of Thanksgiving and time to focus on cultivating a thankful heart or practicing an attitude of gratitude. As much as I hate to admit to it, I have failed at demonstrating appreciation to those I love most dearly. It happens when I least expect it and when I am held accountable for my response, I become defensive and try to make excuses.

I find it’s easy to express gratitude when everything is going well and I am well-rested. However, the challenge occurs when I am tired, distracted, or my expectations are not met. Some examples that I know I am guilty of are: when the trash was taken out, but one room was missed, or the car was cleaned, but the windows were still dirty, or even the kitchen has been cleaned and the counters have crumbs on them. Instead of responding to my husband with gratitude for the effort made, I start complaining about what was left undone.

Throughout his letters, Paul reminds early believers to not complain and grumble, to be content in all circumstances, and be thankful. These are reminders to me that responding with criticism or defensiveness is not enhancing my interactions with others. Relationships are built on love, appreciation, and biting my tongue at times. Thus, as I learn to cultivate an attitude of gratitude, I want to plant the seeds of thankfulness in all I say and do. Then, I will try to learn to recognize and pull the weeds of discontent, criticism, and defensiveness.

Dear Lord, I come to you with a contrite heart. I know I have been selfish in my attitudes and expectations around those I love most. Help me to recognize when I become defensive and critical. Instead, help me cultivate the attitudes of love, appreciation, humility, and kindness. Thank you for your patience with me as I falter. May I demonstrate that same patience to others. Amen

Thank you for your support and encouragement in my ministry. I am beginning to schedule events for 2022. If you know a group looking for a speaker, please feel free to share my contact information.


I have new holiday devotions on You Version and 2 more podcasts being released next month. If you have missed the recent interviews, Here are some links:

You Version Holiday Devotions http://bible.us/r/7Sa

Check out a recent podcast interview with Kristin Clouse.

Season 2 of Fully Restored Podcast is here! My guest, Peg Arnold, and I discuss the topic of Eating Disorders and how she became transformed from destructive behaviors in her life. I so appreciate Peg’s openness and transparency regarding a sensitive topic. To hear in full click this link:

Apple: https://podcasts.apple.com/…/fully…/id1534896134…

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/episode/4VThSQJbsRTWerpS8pcLZ5…

Here is another podcast you might have missed.
Join Me on the Fierce Calling Podcast You can catch it on the replay.  I pray it will bring you encouragement.

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