When Stubbornness is Transformed

I have to admit that I’m a pretty stubborn gal. I tend to get thoughts, ideas or desires stuck in my head and don’t give up until they’re resolved or obtained. I have a knack with words and can be pretty convincing most of the time. One of the reasons I know this is because of my offspring. Every one of them takes after me and every one of them is stubborn. 

Of course this strength of character has its benefits when trying to pull through tough times, when completing tasks that are particularly difficult or when something unpleasant just has to get done. But more often than not, our stubbornness only causes us unnecessary sadness when we don’t get what we want. 

The children of Israel were one stubborn bunch in today’s First Reading. They had strayed and begun following false gods. Their hearts were hardened. They even resorted to cutting themselves to get Baal to make his presence known. Of course it was all to no avail, because there is no other god than the One, true God.

He made himself known through a raging fire, despite the fact that the altar was doused with water three times. He came down to show his people that he was real, alive and present. He came in flames to show them that he could once again set their hearts aflame if only they would open them up to Him. 

I find that I’m happier when I let go of my stubbornness, when I let another person make a decision once in a while or when I tell them they had a good idea. When my heart and mind is open to truly listening to my family, friends and coworkers instead of always thinking about the next thing to say to appear that I always know what I’m talking about or am always right, I feel free. 

I imagine the Israelites felt the same sense of relief. God surely sent them a burst of joy once they declared their dedication to Him, their faith in Him. Surely they felt remorse for their stubbornness and sought to seek God and His will above their own. 

Lord, help me to let go of any unhealthy attachments, any lesser gods that have snuck into my heart. Turn my stubbornness into openness and generosity. May my life give witness to you, your joy and your love. Amen. 

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Tami Urcia grew up in Western Michigan, a middle child in a large Catholic family. She spent early young adulthood as a missionary in Mexico, studying theology and philosophy, then worked and traveled extensively before finishing her Bachelor’s Degree in Western Kentucky. She loves tackling projects, finding fun ways to keep her little ones occupied, quiet conversation with the hubby and finding unique ways to love. She works at for Christian Healthcare Centers, is a guest blogger on CatholicMom.com and BlessedIsShe.net, runs her own blog at https://togetherandalways.wordpress.com and has been doing Spanish translations on the side for over 20 years.

Feature Image Credit: Vidar Nordli-Mathisen, unsplash.com/photos/cSsvUtTVr0Q