The kids and I are going fishing together for the first time. My youngest daughter wanted to know why some fish get caught, and why other fish don’t. I shared that the fish that aren’t so easily caught are smart enough to recognize the bait. The same applies in real life scenarios that we face as believers in tests of being baited into conflict, enticed in coming out of character, and being pressured to engage in brutish behavior towards others is being able to recognize the bait that is being thrown in not taking it in.
It’s Not Worth It !
My son had a accident when he was three years old from a bad slip and fall at church that left a mark right in the center of his forehead. It has been over a decade since the incident that left a permanent scar, yet my teenage son has never been bothered by it until recently. He’s usually unraveled by anything, but a recent group chat by classmates on Instagram being lead by a classmate who likes to tease other’s flaws brought up my son’s scar. He shared with me and a close friend / former coworker ” Uncle Freeman” on separate occasions that the boy keeps “trying him” in an attempt to get some rivalry going. My son is a outgoing football player respected by his teachers and peers. The bully he shared was known as a trouble maker who has issues with pretty much everyone. My son said that he tried to be friends with his classmate in seeing that no one wanted to at school in sharing lunch with him at the table, sparking up conversation, and standing up for him when others teased his classmate. It worked for awhile but the young man’s inner insecurities got the best of him in feeling like if you can’t beat them join them in turning into a bully himself. The mama bear in me asked my son if he wanted me to intervene in the bullying issue in seeing he was starting to get visibly upset by the ongoing shenanigans of the weekly group chats on teasing, but my son shared it wasn’t worth it. He said,” Mama, I’m just going to be me, and let him have it. Anyone who has that much energy to waste to tease on a scar has bigger issues than me.” My son hasn’t mentioned anything more regarding the bully, and he embraces his scar as part of him.
My mom did the best she could in taking care of my brothers and I as a single parent. I am very close to my mother in being her only daughter. I’m also protective on my mom as any child would, but I am a bit more in having her as my sole parent left along with seeing her fight cancer. I have a former in-law that has always stirred the pot in causing drama, causing dissension, and just being spiteful for no reason, yet hides their hands after causing chaos in confusion. My mom is very happy go lucky no matter what in having a bright personality, and she has a vibrant personal style. The same relative at an honors day program for my daughter attempted to bait my mom in one of their plots to cause drama at a school event while all the parents and guests were being seated. My mom sat unintentionally aware to any respective seating in which this same relative sat as close as she could to get my mom’s attention. My mom was already making friends in her usual charismatic way with other attendees in her seating area. My former in-law made their presence known in interrupting my mom after they weren’t being notice in saying,” Oh, Hi, Lilla, I didn’t know that was you, I thought I was sitting by a man.” The shade of it all! My mom smiled dressed in her lovely white floral dress, beautiful pearls, with her silver strands flowing in a ponytail, and she spoke friendly to the person attempting to cut her down without acknowledging the deliberate insult from that former in-law without a smidge of discontent in enjoying the program. I will admit that there was a part of me that wanted to address the issue to that person, but my mom handled it with so much class. The same relative attempted to do the same to me at a recent visitation in picking up my daughters when I got out of the car in waving frantically in walking up to the car in then say,” Oh, I thought it was Pierce”. My car windows aren’t darken, my son and I are different shades of brown, I’m a busty woman, and my son has a slim athletic built. This relative doesn’t have vision problems, they’re just mean-spirited in immaturity. I remembered the grace my mom had with that individual, and I smiled in speaking to the person anyways in going on about my day.
Know The Triggers
Sometimes it’s not that we’re baited into conflict, but we may be triggered in other areas that we must be aware of in recognizing that we are being baited. A gossiper will go all out their way to bait you into talking about others, or a gossiper will try to pry information out of you to use in malicious conversation later. A toxic relationship of any kind would play on your vulnerabilities in spotlighting your insecurities to throw your game mentally in baiting you with attempts to highlight your flaws. I’ve noticed that adult bullies have the similarities of children bullies in baiting others to join their plights against a target in formulating groups for petty attacks. A smear campaign or a false narrative being played against our reputation may bait us into acting defensively in behavior. The Bible is filled with stories of individuals who were baited to go against the word of God, Jesus himself was even enticed, but they managed to keep their focus on their faith in following their purpose.
Recognize scenarios in which you’re being baited. Never give anyone power to push you through your triggers. Sin against no one in acting ungodly even if it’s a bandwagon of individuals who choose to do other. Pray for your enemies and those who hurt you and others for deliverance. Never feel like you have to prove who you are if your heart is clean and your intentions are pure. Use your scars and battle wounds as a testimony without allowing others to shame you for them. Always, when someone attempts to throw a low blow choose to take the high road with class.
Check out Women’s Day for 35 Bible Verses on Anger. https://www.womansday.com/life/inspirational-stories/g29328885/bible-verses-about-anger/
Be blessed Beautiful People.
1 thought on “Don’t Take The Bait : Keeping Your Cool”
Such a beautifully written piece! Your mom sounds like such a strong-willed and level-headed woman who knows her self worth. I commend her for setting such a beautiful example for you and your sons 💖
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