No I am not a smoker but I had a serious problem with Butting Out. I tended to be the aggressive Butting In type.
I stuck my nose in where it didn’t belong, and then found myself refereeing quarrels not of my making and taking sides in discussions that should have made no difference to me.
I realize now that I hated confrontation, and wanted to avoid it, even if it wasn’t mine. I wanted peace at any price, in every situation.
Once a colleague confided she’d have to miss a car payment because her boss hadn’t deposited her salary into her bank account. I took it upon myself to call the company payroll officer and demand satisfaction on her behalf!
In-law issues have their own dynamic. Why should I care if Uncle George wouldn’t speak to Cousin Sally? That fiasco ended with neither of them speaking to me. Sigh.
I monitored my children’s every squabble over toys and treats. Unfortunately, my interference prevented them from developing their own problem-solving skills.
Jesus’ advice for “butter-inners” is perfectly clear in any Bible version.
John 21:22 -Jesus said to him, If I want him to stay (survive, live) until I come, what is that to you? [What concern is it of yours?] You follow Me (AMP)!
John 21:22- Jesus answered, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me (NIV).”
It took a long time, but eventually, I learned to trust Jesus to work out the messes of others. I took back all my extra time and energy and focused it on my personal walk with him.
What is taking up our time and energy today? I hope it is only Jesus.
Prayer: Lord, when all about us cries out for our attention; help us remember that only your attention will make the difference in any situation. Help us butt out when it is none of our business! In Jesus’ name, amen.