Are You A Thermometer or a Thermostat?

therm or therm.jpg

A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

I've written before that I'm a pretty emotional person.  I get moved to tears easily.  (My son says I cry at toilet paper commercials!)  And I have amazing moments of joy as well.  I really run the spectrum of feelings.

Sometimes, I'm glad. Other times, I feel as if my emotions simply run away taking me with them.

I read about an interesting concept as to how we approach the world.

The question asked was whether we are a thermometer or a thermostat.

So we respond to the atmosphere around us?   (I know I do oh-so-often!)

Or are we a thermostat?  Do we help regulate the atmosphere around us?

When emotions are running high, do we add to it - or add our own tempering influence.

I know the answer for me.

When emotions run high - so do mine.

I've known it's something I need to work on, but didn't quite have the concrete visual that I seem to need to begin working on it.

Now, I can ask myself,  am I being a thermometer?  Am I responding to my environment?  Angry when others are angry?  Sad when others are sad? Feeling out-of-control when situations are out-of-control?

Or am I tempering my environment?  Am I helping calm down angry situations by not responding in kind?  Am I staying calm, level headed, and helping others to have a chance to calm down? 

I like to think in pictures.  Now I have a thermometer and a thermostat firmly in place.

I guess my major reason for not following the emotions of others all over the map is that I know that emotionality is not good for my health.  Undue stress is harmful for me. 

So my question to you today …

Are you a thermometer …

or a thermostat?

Father God, Help us to be able to walk in a Godly manner, responding not to the events around us, but as You would have us.  Help live this live in a manner worthy of You.  Amen and amen.

Digital images courtesy of Panpote/


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