I once lived in a location that had a dense row of huge, healthy, sweet gum trees all across the back west yard of the house. In the fall of the year there was a solid carpet of gum balls on the yard making it difficult to walk across the yard and it was like a war zone to mow. Any leisurely games or activities in the yard were impossible without a thorough raking. I got fed up with it one day and with a smirky smile on my face it felt good to contact the tree cutter. That winter, I was quite proud of myself, that “I fixed that situation!” Notice I said the trees had been across the “back west yard” of the house. Come summer, the air conditioner would not stop running. The house would just not get cool, and it constantly stayed stuffy inside, finally cooling down to kind of a comfortable level early in the morning. One day my lightening fast brain realized what I had done. In my rage against gum balls, I had unthinkingly cut down all my afternoon shade from the hot afternoon summer sun beaming on the house from the west, heating the bricks on the west side. My cooling bill went through the roof. I tried to devise ways to off-set it, but I never did. It would require an expensive up-grade of the heat and air system and added insulation. Had I known the difference it was going to make to cut the trees, I would have just continued to deal with the gum balls.
The Bible says envy is “rottenness of the bones” and “a merry heart doeth good like a medicine” and “a broken spirit drieth the bones” (Proverbs 14:30; 17:22). Attitudes affect our body both positively and negatively. We might think we are getting by with holding unforgiveness, a grudge, or hatred in our heart, but it is costing us somewhere. We might think, “I fixed them!”, but it could be the source of a physical malady we are experiencing. Who that person is or what they have done to you might be gum balls in your yard, but it is best to just take the Lord’s forgiveness for them as your forgiveness for them and you go free by the blood of Jesus. Just go ahead and rake the gum balls out of the yard and enjoy the shade and the beautiful crimson fall foliage and the lowered electric bill. Refuse to be irritated.