Fistfight with an Ant Pile~Toxic Thought
My Most Recent Lesson on Toxic Thought
This lesson on toxic thought all started with a fistfight with an ant pile. Yes, you heard me right. The weather was just starting to break in South Florida. In the early morning, it was around 56 degrees and in the 70’s in the day. My husband and I decided to take a walk before the sun came up. I love morning walks and looking forward to coffee, so for me, all was right with the world. We had great conversation and loved the crisp walk. Just before the end of the path, I noticed some food trash on the path in front of me. It happens to be a pet peeve of mine to overlook trash-if I walk over it- I can’t stop thinking about how I should have picked it up. Probably because beauty is a value of mine and a path isn’t beautiful as long as there’s trash on it. So before I gave it a second thought, I swooped down and picked up the food box and in a matter of seconds, I realized my hand and wrist were covered with tiny ants and I was being had for breakfast!
Let me pause here and give you some background. I am from Canada. I lived in GA and raised my family the first 15 years in the Midwest. I have seen carpenter ants and stepped in my share of red ant piles but nothing and I say nothing compares to the bite from the black fire ant that lives in South Florida! To add context to this, the first few months our family lived in Florida, my youngest three were out playing on the playground. They were also getting used to the different types of lizards that inhabited the area and thought it would be so great to help one of the lizards have dominion over an ant hill by placing it on top to feast, thinking they were doing the lizard a favor. But much to their dismay and horror they just watched as it took only a few seconds for the lizard to turn completely stiff in reptile cardiac arrest.
So, considering I literally had an unexpected fist-full of ants to deal with, I violently flung the trash away from me as fiercely as I could. Although, much to my surprise, what concerned me more than the pain and shock of the ensuing ant attack was what proceeded out of my mouth once I switched to survival mode. You may think I said a few minced oaths- honestly, a cuss word or two would be quite understandable to match the pain factor from the ant bites I was enduring. But no, when the pain registered in my brain what shot out of my mouth was not a cuss word but these exact words:
“Do something nice and this what you get!”
Oh! cough, what exactly, where exactly did THAT toxic thought come from? Ironically, for days after, while I was pondering the origin of such a toxic thought, I was watching the bites on my hand evolve and go through the natural process of bringing the toxin to the surface-waiting for release and healing. I used this opportunity to ask myself some questions. Have I said this type of statement before? Is this something that I think subconsciously or quietly in my head in my regular routine? I did find some connections. Maybe some of you find that you have such a thought from time to time. For instance, could our thoughts be influenced by sayings and song titles such as, “No good deed goes un punished” or “Only the Good Die Young.” We may be surprised how much these broadly accepted societal viewpoints have crept into our passive thinking throughout any given day. This I do know, I am a mom and a wife and it’s not hard to find opportunities for toxic thought to creep in. I found myself recalling times when I sacrificed my own desires to move towards my family in generosity or thoughtfulness and not only watched it receive a lack of response but there have been times when I received a completely opposite affect than what should have been reciprocated! Has this ever happened to you? I would guess- For Sure!
So, here’s the rub, the challenge to us in such situations- Bottom Line.
Keep your heart unencumbered.
This little object lesson reminded me how very easy it is to allow little offenses to weigh you down with toxic thought and grow callouses on your heart. What a sweet, merciful Father-with brilliant timing and sense of humor. He used a moment otherwise overlooked with merely a shriek and a shrug to be an opportunity to examine my heart.
Thank you, Papa, for continuing to set me free.
Click here for more information on toxic thought and its effects.
If you resonate with this blog and would like to take a journey to discover what toxic thoughts are keeping you from living in full freedom and potential contact me here.
Stay tuned for more in a future blog on replacing toxic thought with truth!