Guest Post: Naomi Loomis
My thoughts for the last couple of weeks have been on the word: Contempt. I have actually been studying it and praying about it. It has made me take a step back on my own life and realize that I need to fix myself.
Contempt is an emotion and it is a strong one at that. By definition, contempt means to think a person or thing is beneath consideration, worthless or deserving scorn. Sadly, contempt can be found in all of our relationships.
In order to fight against contempt, we must first understand what it sounds like, what it looks like and how contempt makes us feel.
The sound of contempt
If you’ve ever said, “Oh, I would never do that!” when referring to the actions of other people, you have expressed contempt toward their actions.
If you’ve ever said, “Oh, I would never be like that!”, then you’ve expressed contempt toward a person.
If you have ever been made fun of or disrespected your spouse/friend, then you have expressed contempt toward those you love.
The look of contempt
Have you ever rolled your eyes? If so, you have shown signs of contempt.
Do you have a lack of empathy? If so, you have shown signs of contempt.
If you are the person who was the recipient of contempt/disgust, you are likely to choose to leave the relationship, to spit it out from your life-space.
Most people react to being treated contemptuously with the thought “If you don’t want me, then I don’t want you!”
And when we lose a relationship, who truly wins anything?
The feeling of contempt
If you have ever felt hopeless, you have felt contempt.
If you have ever had to questions your friendship or marriage, you have felt contempt.
I am guilty, what about you?
Contempt is damaging to all relationships, including parenting. As parents, we give a lot to our children and when they are not appreciative or they are disrespectful, we can hold the view that our children are undeserving of the privileges they have. When we journey down the road to contempt, we put all our relationships at risk for a disaster.
So what can we do about it?
Pray to be humble and not hurtful.
Pray that God will help heal old wounds.
We can use, “I” instead of “You” statements.
“I feel frustrated when.…..” or “My feelings are hurt when……………”
If a friend or husband does something that annoys you or hurts you, don’t assume he/she is doing it on purpose. Talk to them and tell them your feelings, but don’t blame them for purposelessly being hurtful.
We all have faults, right? We need to pay attention to our own faults and practice compassion.
Listen to understand.
When talking to another person, appreciate what they are saying. Be positive. Being a positive person enhances our relationships. Appreciation, gratitude, affections, agreements, interest and smiles go a long way.
Don’t let your aggravations and thoughts fester. Talk about your feelings. Talk about your stress. Don’t attack. Don’t assume.
None of us are perfect. We all fall short of other’s expectations and desires. When contempt is removed from the equation, we can begin to get past our broken and distorted expectations of those in our life. More importantly, we can remember that grace and compassion was given to us freely. When we see that God responded in love and not hatred to His people, it can be much easier to see past the faults in other’s lives.
“Remove from me reproach and contempt; for I have kept thy testimonies.”
“Have mercy upon us, O LORD, have mercy upon us: for we are exceedingly filled with contempt.”
Meet the Author:
Naomi Loomis is a ranch wife, ranch mom and a blogger. Her and her cowboy are raising their family on their Nebraska cattle ranch.
“We all have a story to tell and this is mine.” You can follow Naomi on her blog.