We all know people who get on our nerves—people we need extra mental space to be around or try our hardest to avoid. Sometimes we ignore them, hoping they’ll get the hint, but they rarely do.
Maybe these are people who have no concept of personal space. Maybe they go on and on about some hobby you don’t give a squat about, or constantly flake on plans they made with you. Maybe they take advantage of you or treat you like an idiot. Maybe they can’t take social cues, like when you’re trying to leave a conversation and they keep talking.
In your head, you’re yelling, “Go away!” But to be polite, you keep nodding and try not to let your head explode.
A friend of mine would refer to these people as “livers.”
The liver isn’t a pretty thing but has lots of important functions. It regulates chemical levels in your blood and breaks down nutrients. It stores and releases glucose. It removes bacteria and other harmful substances from your bloodstream.
In short, ugly but important.
Or, applied to people, annoying but valuable.
Early on in the Bible, we’re told that “God created man in His own image.” Ephesians 2:10 calls us His “workmanship,” His masterpiece.
Think about that for a second—you are an expression of God’s work, created in His very likeness. … And so are the annoying people in your life.
God creates each person uniquely and loves every single one of us. Every. Single. One. He creates us with specific talents, personalities and desires. He has a purpose and life plan for each of us.
We are not mass produced, but carefully made by the God of the universe. And He doesn’t play favorites like we do (Romans 2:11).
I love what Psalm 139:14 says about our worth: “I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” But that doesn’t just apply to me; it applies to everyone around me, too. Even the ones who don’t get social cues.
So next time your patience runs dry and you think you’re going to implode from being around so-and-so, remember these two things:
One, you probably do annoying things, too.
And, more importantly, that person causing your near-implosion is a masterpiece formed by God Himself. … Heck, maybe that person is part of your life to help soften your edges.
Think about how you’ll respond next time someone gets on your nerves. Then try to see that person the way God does—as a valued reflection of Himself.