When My Mean Girl Wants to Come Out
Lysa TerKeurst

"I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete." John 15:11 (NIV)

Do you ever have days where someone tries to rip the joy right out of your life?

I do.

And it's really hard. It's a battle. The good girl part of my brain says, "Be nice. Honor Jesus with your actions. Your response is your responsibility. Self control, Lysa, self control."

But the mean girl part of my brain says, "How dare they act that way! I'll show you Buster Brown."

One part of me says fold your hands in prayer.

But another part of me says throw your hands in the air and throw a good old fashioned hissy fit.
Issues.

I have them. Maybe most of us girls do. Especially that one special week a month.

But God.

I love how those two words interrupt me. Redirect me. Remind me. Comfort me. Battle the mean girl in me. And cause me to pause.

Pause. Just for a minute, pause. And it's in that pause where we give the Holy Spirit room to interrupt the mean girl response just dying to come out and bloody the situation.

The Holy Spirit says, "Lysa stop and think. It might feel good in the minute to scream, retaliate, pitch a fit and flood the situation with scary emotions. But it won't feel good in the long run. It will feel awful in the long run. You'll feel the sting of regret. Come on Lysa… be rare. Be a girl who looks ahead and determines to do what's best in the long run."

Yes, it stinks that this other person is determined to steal my joy.

It really does.

But in reality, my joy can only be stolen if I let it be stolen. In John 15:10-12 Jesus says, "If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father's commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you."

Several things struck me as I read this verse. In each interaction I have with others, I'm faced with the choice to either remain in God's love or retreat from God's love. I can't control how this other person is acting towards me. But I can control how I act and react. If I chose to remain in God's love and react to this other person kindly, it affects my joy. Jesus interjects His joy right into the heart of a kind person. If I make the choice to be kind, instead of my joy being depleted, it will be completed.

So back off mean girl part of my brain. The Jesus girl in me is taking over. And holding on to every ounce of joy that's rightfully mine. Circumstances can steal stuff from me. But not my joy.
And all Jesus' girls say, "Amen and amen!"

Dear Lord, this sounds so good in this moment. But it will not be easy when I have an interaction today with "that person"… the one who makes my mean girl want to come out. Will You help me remember these truths? Will You help me remember this person can not steal my joy? And help me remember if I react kindly my joy can be completed rather than depleted. And that's what I want. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Click here to visit Lysa’s blog for a list of three practical things we can do to keep our mean girl from coming out today.

Lysa is speaking in over 40 cities this year and she’d love to meet you! To check for a city near you, click here.

Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl by Lysa TerKeurst. This book contains three chapters all about what to do when our mean girl wants to come out. Learn how to conquer your anger, envy, and stress today!

Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl DVD and Leader’s Guide – Contains six sessions lasting 15-20 minutes each on one DVD and a Leader’s Guide for only $24.99! Perfect for your Bible study group or as a neighborhood Book Club. Participant’s Guide sold separately for $9.99 each.

Application Steps:
If you know you will be interacting with someone who has a habit of trying to steal your joy, plan how you can remain calm and kind. Also, plan how you can limit the time you spend interacting with them.

Keep these three thoughts in your mind:

This person can only steal my joy if I let them.

I can't control this person, but I can control how I act and react.

If I make the choice to be kind, instead of my joy being depleted, it will be completed.

For a list of three practical things we can do to keep our mean girl from coming out today, click here.

Reflections:
What situations in my life might get better if I apply what I'm learning in this devotional today?
Do I want frustration or joy to be my reality today? What would it be like to live with Jesus' complete joy in my heart?

Power Verses:
John 15:10, "If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father's commands and remain in his love." (NIV)

John 15:11, "I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete." (NIV)

John 15:12, "My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you." (NIV)

© 2010 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.

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12 Comments:

Blogger KARUNIA said...

Thank you Lisa for your real story facing the bad situation. That's right there are 2 person in our mind when we are in depress or when we are facing prob. the simple way will come a head at that time usually with our bad characteristic: emotional,angry,upset..which make the condition more bad. It's so difficult to calm down even a minute.. But if we want to hold and put the things as a question in Him that time too, maybe and I believe He will help us to hold/calm down a moment.

Next.. His leading with peace event the matter not clear will be our mine.

Need more...more and more practice ya... :-)

Thanks

Anonymous Lisa V. said...

But God. Yes.

Blogger Val in KY said...

Amen and Amen! I really needed to be reminded of that this morning, since there's a hissy fit I'd like to throw at someone here at work!

But God.

Blogger eph2810 said...

Uh - ah...I needed to read this this morning. I thought that I am the only one who has a 'mean girl' part. I will take the Scripture you shared today to heart every day when I encounter 'that person'...

Thank you Lysa for sharing from your heart.

Love & peace,
Iris

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, we all have that conflict between the girl who desires to act as she feels and the girl who desires to please the God she loves with her obedience. It always helps me to remember the evil personality who is behind the person that seems to be trying to steal our joy. Let's fight satan and his evil cohorts not people that satan uses. Thank you for sharing so honestly. O God help each of us in our spiritual battles. May You be glorified.

Blogger Robin said...

Really needed that today. Wish I would have had it a couple of weeks ago when my mean girl came out based on my reaction to something a family member did, and then her mean girl came out. Been praying how to resolve the situation but to remain calm while doing so because the more I think about it, the more my mean girl wants to come out.
Love your devos and blog.

Blogger Donna said...

That mean girl side of me really gets me in more trouble than it is worth. As daughters of God we must learn to take a step back for a moment and look at the situation to see if it is really worth reacting to or just ask God to give you peace. Thank you Lisa.

Blogger Joan Davis said...

When I read your post on my lunch break my jaw dropped. Amazing! Just this morning before I left for work, I posted some of my own thoughts on "stealing joy". In fact, I used that very same phrase! Don't you find it incredible when God does that? I mean, I have been thinking about how joy is a gift from God and that no one can steal it unless we let them...and then I read your confirming post! Thank you for sharing your story on keeping your joy when the "mean girl wants to come out"! I can so relate!

Blogger jennybuckman said...

Thanks so much Lysa, I definitely needed to read this devotion! I needed guidance on how to keep my quick rush to anger in check - thank you!!!!

Anonymous Naoko said...

Yes! Amen Amen!!! Love today's devotion. Thank you Lysa!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for today's devotional. I am in a horrible situation at work....

Blogger Linda said...

When I am listening to one of my daughter's troubles with her motherinlaw and husband, I can feel my mean girl self emerging. In my zeal to comfort and empathize with my daughter, I fear that I fail both the Lord and her. It is so hard to find what is best to say and how best to respond. I should have a corner on this by now, at my age, but regretably I do not.

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