Last night I was IMing with a friend of mine, and after one particular text I heard nothing back. Texting silence. It was awful. I scrolled through our texts and reread the last one I sent to see if perhaps I said something offensive without knowing it. After a few seconds, which felt like an eternity, the panic set in.
What had I done? Where was my reply? I knew it was childish to react in such a way, but I didn’t care. My mind raced with all the possibilities of what could have gone wrong. Maybe I text too many times, too fast and too furiously and my friend got annoyed? Or maybe I didn’t pay enough attention to their needs? It could have been a million different things. And I must have played through about a hundred of them in my mind.
Then I began to pray. My prayers went something like this, “Please let my friend not be mad at me.” It was a simple prayer, but it was honest and true. Then I remembered something that I had read a while back on patience that helped a lot. It was something I found on a pinterest board that said, “Patience is not the ability to wait, but to keep a good attitude while waiting.” I was worrying so much about what my friend was thinking of me, me, me, that I forgot to think about what he was going through, and that is always a very bad thing. So I turned towards praying for him, and began to feel much better. I changed my prayer to “Please let everything be okay for him and his family.”
I think that happens a lot today. People especially in their teens, 20s, 30s and 40s expect the instant reply. And if it doesn’t come, thoughts immediately go to—what did I do wrong, or on occasion, is everything ok? I’m going to try harder in those moments to pray for the person I am texting instead of sending out a million text bombs to their phone.
Have you had an experience like mine? How did you handle it?