Thursday, May 19, 2011


The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger, and his glory is to overlook a transgression. Proverbs 19:11

Slow to anger and overlooking transgressions. If you have difficulty with either of those issues, have I got a training ground for you!

We have 12 of the 140 days of the regular session of the 82nd Legislature left to go. Looking at the statistics for this session versus last session, it appears we have lost a tad bit of productivity. Now, don’t get me wrong, I rarely think passing more legislation is a good thing. But, it is an indicator of how relationships are on the House and Senate floors and how the two chambers are relating to each other.

Coming into the session there were a couple of really, really need to get done things. The first and most important, of course, was the budget. No budget no state government. While I concede that many government programs fall into that “non-essential” category (my job included), there really are legitimate functions of government we have to fund. And, since the budget is the only constitutional requirement of a session, it would seem to be prudent to get to it before the last two weeks of session.

But, alas, the fiscal matters bills that must be passed to fund the budget have been postponed on a daily basis each day for the past three weeks. Personally, I’m ready to get the six to eight inch stack of papers relating to those bills off of my desk and move on to something else.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes (and sometimes out in public), the Republicans are arguing with the Democrats about budget priorities. The House is arguing with the Senate about budget numbers. And the Governor is telling everybody his criteria for signing a budget. When I count my blessings, being a witness and not a participant in the discussions is one I count twice.

Then, to add fuel to the fire - because we really need more people to get more offended - a Senate committee took a House bill on immigration, removed all language on immigration and inserted controversial language on homeland security. The Senate is allegedly holding the House re-districting map hostage, waiting for the House to move on the budget (or something). The House is slow to move on Senate bills in retaliation.

All in all, it reminds me of The Three Stooges where Larry, Curly and Mo poke each other in the eye, tweak noses and pull hair. Or, if you can’t picture that, just imagine a junior high group of girls.

And, as if that was not enough, everybody has been working 80 plus hours a week with too little sleep and high stress. That makes it a great time to point out what Proverbs tells us: the discretion of a man makes him slow to anger. Discretion is defined as “the freedom to decide what should be done in a particular situation.” Key words: freedom and decide. You can decide not to get angry at the actions of the other party. And glory is defined as “high renown or honor won by notable achievements.”

Put simply, it is an honor for you to overlook a transgressions and decide to control your anger.

Keep it in mind today.

Lord, it is one thing to know what we should do and another to actually do it. Help us today to walk this out. Amen.

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