Don’t let your emotions cause you to be “too helpful”.

When our thoughts are based on emotions, we must be aware that they can be misleading us. I am a mother of 3 children and they certainly can play on my emotions. Recently, the youngest has been struggling with some separation anxiety. As a mother, I want to help him with this situation. This is the time when we must slow down and look at all options. During my option seeking, I recalled a great story about being helpful.


A gentleman caught a caterpillar and placed it in a container. He waited patiently as the caterpillar went through its stages of transforming into the cocoon. Finally one day, he began to notice movement from the cocoon. He noticed a tiny slit in the side of the cocoon. Day after day, the new butterfly inside worked until exhausted to escape from within. The butterfly struggled and struggled to squeeze through the far too small hole. Then the man had an idea. He would help the butterfly with his struggle. He took a very small pair of scissors and gently snipped the side of the cocoon. Then he waited. The next time the butterfly began its miraculous escape it succeeded. To the man’s surprise, the butterfly did not look right. The wings were tiny and the body appeared larger than normal. As the man watched, the butterfly tried and tried to fly, but could not. Its wings were in fact too small for the unnaturally large body. Not long after that, the butterfly died.

What the man did not realize was, the butterfly needed that struggle in its life to become what it was meant to be. That struggle causes the fluid in its body to be pushed out and into its wings. We have to be mindful not to be “too helpful” in others lives as well. Although we mean well, that struggle may be causing the natural growth process that is needed for that person to become who God meant them to be.

Is there someone in your life that you may be “too helpful” with? It’s a fine line. Give it some thought this week.

Humility is a great teacher. Ouch!!!

Wow, this week has been a huge learning experience. I am always amazed at how God directs the flow of experiences in our lives. Early in the week I sent a question to Michael Hyatt for his podcast about “Watch your mouth: How our words impact others.” Never did I think that I was going to get my chance to try this on in real life, but I did. That very evening, I got the chance to use my words in a positive way toward my daughter. I failed miserably. I got on my holier than though high horse and let the brimstone and fire sermon begin. I deeply wounded my daughter by insincere words that were based on emotions and untrue beliefs.

danger_on_grunge_wall[1]I have felt like the scum under the rock ever since. If only I had stopped, walked away, and thought about the situation. Then I could have came back later to discuss it when cooler heads would have prevailed. Yes, we get chances every day to use what we know is the best way to live our lives. We don’t always succeed. I am certainly using this experience as yet another learning tool.

I have apologized to my daughter more than once. I am ashamed of my behavior. I hope these feelings that I have right now, will be forever burnt into my mind. I pray these feelings help me prevail in my next challenge of mind over mouth. Controlling our thoughts is the only way to control our words. It all starts with how we think.

I got to hear Michael use my question on his podcast. It all came full circle for me. Humility is a great teacher. Have you had a humility check lately?

If you have techniques that you use, “to think before you speak”, I would love to hear them. Leave me a comment with your suggestions.