The Big Chill and Salty Meltdown

Written by on January 19, 2015

In a recent standoff with a friend, things got real chill. Not “chill” as in “kicking back” (although something inside me did want to kick him back). Think popsicle in the paw of a polar bear.

I imagine I’m auditioning for Elsa in Frozen. Let the storm rage on. I clutch ruthless, resentful emotions to my chest, in rightful revenge for the wrongs. My house and the roads at our intersection crackle, crackle in one enormous fractal of solid H2O.

So much for “Let it go.”

My bitterness iciclizes every word I rehearse, but the Holy Spirit breaks into my thoughts and whispers, “Hey, give it up. Forgive him.”

I reply, “No way, Dude. He doesn’t deserve it.”

He asks, “So how’d you sleep last night?”

I hate it when He asks questions like that. The Holy Spirit sat through the night with me as I tossed and turned, trying to justify my own mean-spirited words and actions, and failing miserably. He knows about the Big Chill. And He wants me to do something about it.

He offers a hint in the Big Book, “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you” (Matthew 6:14).

He says, “Be the initiator. Hazard out onto that razor-thin plane of ice.”

So reluctantly, I give in and pray. But before I do business with my friend,  in a reality check, I realize that  I’ve lost sleep partly because I was upset with myself. The Holy Spirit pours me a cup of hot truth. We drink together and my insides warm up. He forgives me and invites me to forgive myself. So I do.

Then He flips to another page: Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.” (Ephesians 4:2)

He leans forward and says He’ll help me forgive my friend, too.

In Matthew 5:13, Jesus says, “You are the salt of the earth.” With my Zamboni, I’ve slicked up my street so shiny, a flea could skate figure eights on a dime. But Jesus isn’t far behind. With His rumbling city truck, he fans salt cross the asphalt.

I hammer a text to Him. “What are you doing? You’re reversing all my hard work!”

He texts back. “Salt spread on an icy road melts the ice immediately around it. Melting spreads out from that point.

I take a deep breath, fling a few grains of salt, the size of mustard seeds, at the vestiges of my friendship, and apologize to my friend.

And then a miracle. My melting heart warms and spreads to his. Who knows, maybe our thaws spread to our families, too. We explore newfound acceptance in the process. Joy is restored to our relationship as we extend good-natured ribbing and share a good belly laugh. Here was the warmth I craved.

Okay. Maybe the cold really bothered me, anyway.


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  1. Bonnie K   On   January 20, 2015 at 5:52 am

    Wonderful post Lynn!!
    It is amazing that we can relate better sometimes with everyday things of nature and so on, like how you mentioned about the” salt melting the ice.” I always liked ” Squeaky will gets the grease.” But with that one, it makes me think, no I really want to give the guy grease, but maybe there is a better way.
    If you really look at the one doing the squeaking, he may not have had anyone take care of him. In other words, if one never was shone love, how can one give it??
    That’s where our light of Christ shines. Anyone can me kind to someone that is nice to them. It is a lot harder to “Turn the other cheek.
    How important this really is, in this world full of hate, despair, resentment . Feeling unloved. People turning away from the truth.

  2. Gail G   On   January 20, 2015 at 8:43 am

    You are so honestly funny! Even about chilly subjects. I admire that about you and love all the clever analogies for a challenging relational situation. Great photo of you too, BTW!

  3. Anna Chacon Funke   On   January 20, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    I sure needed a dose of that last night Lynn. Excellently stated my friend, forgiveness melts everything even my reluctant heart to apologize.

    Your wittiness is very much appreciated! Love you dear friend!

    • Lynn Hare   On   January 21, 2015 at 8:19 pm

      Anna, thank you. I wish I lived in Unoffendable City. But I suppose the next best thing is a shaker of salt! I love you, too.

  4. William   On   January 25, 2015 at 8:31 pm

    Nice Blog! ☺ Good observations regarding forgiveness. In Gal. 5:22,23 one of the nine fruit of the Spirit is “Longsuffering” when you study the Greek word it brings out a very special meaning.It includes the idea of forbearance and patient endurance of wrong under ill-treatment, without anger or thought of revenge. Just thought I would share this with regard to forgiveness.

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