Confession time: I can count on one finger the amount of times I’ve gone to church in a mood as sour as I was in this past Sunday.
Seriously. I’m not being melodramatic. I was in a funk.
My girls were wonderful and ready to go on time.
Lincoln however was not.
He was seemingly on a mission to be as difficult as possible.
Tantrum after tantrum was unleashed.
Add that to an overly tired dad and a busy week of driving to and from Children’s Hospital for our youngest and you have the perfect storm of bad moods.
It was an F-5 tornado, a 9.0 on the Richter scale, I was grumpy.
Heading to church was not the ideal place for me to end up.
I was grateful for my bad mood though.
Being at my church and not feeling wonderful, blessed, or stoked helped me learn more about leadership and myself.
Because I’m a pastor and a wannabe writer it taught me…
Wait for it…
…Three important lessons on leading through bad moods.
Here’s a shock, they don’t all rhyme or begin with the same letter.
1. It made me more empathetic
I often try to avoid people who look the way I was feeling. On this Sunday I was drawn to them.
You know the people I’m talking about right?
The ones who look miserable to be in your church building. They’re uncomfortable and look agitated.
Yeah, normally I avoid them like the plague, but on Sunday they were “my people” and I empathized with them in a way I hadn’t before. I felt their pain because I was experiencing it first hand.
I’m not avoiding this demographic any longer. From now on I’ll seek out all people in my path.
2. I have a choice to make
All day I was reminded of the power of choice. God has given me free will and the ability to choose.
I did my best (most of the time) to choose to smile.
Feeling tired, stressed and worried about my 10 month old made it so tempting to sulk and just be a jerk.
I had to choose joy. I had to choose kindness. I had to choose to smile.
It’s easier when you feel happy to act happy. It’s important in life and leadership to remember God has given us the ability to choose joy through any circumstance.
3. Jesus is the Hero
I’m so glad Jesus isn’t moody like me.
If I were preaching yesterday then damnation, hell, fire and brimstone would’ve been the topic.
God’s wrath and vengeance and punishment would’ve been proclaimed with some sort of sick satisfaction.
Luckily Jesus is the hero at our church.
Grace, kindness, goodness, compassion and unconditional love were on full display Sunday despite my crappy disposition.
Jesus is the model of consistency.
He consistently forgives, loves, heals, comforts, strengthens, empowers no matter what mood he’s in.
I’m thankful I was in a bad mood last Sunday.
It’s not the way I would choose to go into a Sunday full of church services and people but I learned a lot.
I can choose joy. I must exercise empathy. Jesus is the hero.
What blessing(s) do you find during your bad moods?