I recall a time as a pastor when my emotional skin got so thin that I took offense at just about anything anyone said. I knew it was not good, but it was like I could not stop myself. I liken that period to having “emotional rug-burn.” Rug-burn is a painful condition where friction of some sort has rubbed your skin so thin that it becomes highly sensitive to heat or touch. You can get rug-burn innocently enough, like roughhousing with your children on the floor. But when one has rug-burn, the hypersensitivity it creates makes things that normally would pass unnoticed become a painful focus of our attention.
Resentment creates the equivalent of emotional rug-burn. Resentment is an emotional response we feel towards some sort of perceived wound or slight when we do not feel we have a way of righting the wrong. Resentments are common in submission-authority relationships, with bosses or supervisors (or boards) who may operate with insensitivity or callousness to our situation. We feel we cannot respond lest we lose our jobs, so we put the wrong in an “inner warehouse” and start to store…Continue Reading