My grandpa Virgil, was a bi-vocational country preacher. I was blessed by him living next door to me most of my growing up years. Often when we would take walks in the afternoon he would share insights from life, ministry and ask about my dating life.
During one of those jaunts I was recounting my surprise at a particular persons strong reaction during a confrontation-I've never forgotten his response.
"Son, if you throw a rock over the fence and hear a pig squeal-it means you hit a pig."
At the time I didn't quite know what to make of his response; grandpa was always saying something like that-something you might hear on the front porch of the General Store in Madison County while enjoying an RC Cola a Moon-pie and an extra long slim jim. I didn't get it then-but I understand it now.
In life, the push and pull of opinions, truth and sin get tangled and woven into the fabric of our relationships. Confrontation and clarification work to unwind the twisted knots that keep us from relating in real authentic community and Gospel centered living.
An over reaction to a question, person, comment, opinion or situation says much more about the person with the reaction than whatever it is that caused the reaction.
(over reaction = an excessive emotional response)
I've been guilty of bringing 1000 watts of energy and emotion to a 40 watt problem. In reflecting on those times I've discovered that I respond that way because:
- I feel threatened
- I'm hiding something
- I sense a loss of control
- I don't want my weaknesses to be exposed
- You are right and I know I am wrong
The emotional over reaction is simply a smoke screen to conceal what is really going on with me. Don't buy it, be afraid of it or let it keep you from relating.
Sometimes I'm the person tossing the rock, sometimes I'm the pig.