As a firefighter we witness some of the most horrific tragedies that can often become permanently etched into our mind. We see the sadness of poverty in homelessness, drug addiction, and abuse in our daily calls for service.
We started our career off with vigor and passion inside of us that said “Stand back, the fire department is here and we are going to change your world!” Sadly, after several years of working long hours, frequent calls by our repeat customers, and the medical calls at 3 am for toe pain have calloused our hearts and weakened our passion.
Take a long look in the mirror for a moment and ask yourself:
Why do you come to work?
Is it for some sense of self assurance?
Now think back to your first day on the job as a firefighter. How different were you then? Did you have a different attitude?
How has your outlook changed?
One word comes to mind: bitterness.
Maybe you haven’t been poisoned by this but if you have read further. We often fall victim to letting the world and others steal our passion. The constant negativity and reminders of the cruelty of others is enough to cause most of us to throw in the towel.
Do you complain more than you problem solve? Have politics and the challenges of leadership sapped your energy to try to do more? Do you dread certain areas that you respond to? Do you feel yourself tense up as you go to work? Do you go through the motions without any meaning behind them? If you answered yes, then you have fallen victim to the poison of bitterness.
Bitterness has been defined as me drinking poison and hoping someone else will die. It is a cancerous habit that we ourselves continue to repeat. In part two, the author will share more of personal testimony and how God changed his outlook. Until then remember these words:
Put aside all bitterness, losing your temper, anger, shouting, and slander along with every other kind of evil. Be kind, compassionate, and forgiving to each other, in the same way God forgave you in Christ.
(Part 1 of 2)