Plank Pullin – The One Where I’m a Stubborn…

It’s Plank Pullin’ time! The one day a week that we strongly resolve to ignore the multitude of specks and sawdust around us and pull one bona fide plank from our own eye. Matthew 7:3-5 style.


In case I haven’t made it abundantly clear yet, I’m not so perfect in the perfection department, y’all.  And I’ve been having to fight letting those true, flawed colors shine this week.


Here’s the thing – I am both extremely stubborn and a quitter.  It’s a really unfortunate combination.  I’m not the good kind of stubborn.  The kind that puts her nose to the grind and stays with the job or what-have-you until it’s done, no matter what.  No, I’m more like the ass donkey kind of stubborn.  The one that says, “Screw you, I’m not gonna do that job even if you try to put a muzzle on me and pull.”


Which leads me to point numero 2: I’m super anti-confrontational.


“But Jessica”, you’re probably thinking, “you confront all sorts of hard issues on your blog.  A coward wouldn’t do that.”  To which I would reply, “Um, chyeah, that’s exactly what a coward would do.  Type my thoughts up about something in a room by myself with no one here to look me in the eye and contest me.”


Which brings me to point numero 3: I’m trying to be more confrontational (in the completely healthy sense).


I’ve too often let my feelings about a situation boil under the surface and never ever tell the other person, until I just drift away from that person and situation with bitter, resentful feelings.  And I’m thinking that’s not so smart.  So I’m trying to learn to, respectfully, go to people when I think an issue is worth discussing.


Which brings us to this week, when I actually attempted the above.


And it didn’t go how I wanted. You know, with the other party saying, “Oh, yes, you are 100% right and I’ll make an attempt to rectify that situation immediately.”  Actually, I was prepared for more of a “Well, I 40% see your point, and I will consider it.”  But, in the end, I felt like I got an “I 100% disagree and will take no action.  Period.”


This was all discussed respectfully, but even so, the inner donkey in me started to bray the crap out of the space in between my two ears, y’all.  Which brings us to my inner quitter. “Fine!”, I want to say.  “Well, then I’m not going to fill-in-the-blank anymore!  So take that!  *raspberries* ”


Have I mentioned to you guys how rully mature I can be sometimes?




I’m afraid this is one of those weeks when I can identify the plank, but even when I pull it, I just manage to leave splinters behind.   What about you guys?  Have you been more successful at plank removal than me this week?

Now grab the button for being so brave. ;)








  1. Love your post, Jess. I would highly recommend a book called “Crucial Conversations”. It’s a wonderful tool in helping you understand emotionally charged situations (your own side and the side of the person with whom you have a conflict). I read it while in a not-happy church staff situation and have since used the skills from the book so many times I can’t even count them!! It would be mighty helpful for you, I’m sure!!

    • Hmm, I’ll look into that! Maybe I should start running off all my inner donkey too, like you. ;)

  2. Oh boy is this sooo ME!

    • You guys always make me feel better in knowing I”m not the only imperfect Christian out there. :)

  3. Hah. How easy it is from behind the computer screen and how tough face to face.

  4. I’ve confronted my mom (in a good way) to discuss how she treats me and my daughter (her ONLY grandchild) in comparison to how she treats my brothers….OK, that conversation has taken place. Situations STILL bug me.
    What I just learned by typing this?
    I’ve done the confront conversation and realized I NEVER PULLED THE PLANK!
    Man, I’ve got some work (and praying) to do……

    • Oh yeah, I think I do that a lot. Address the problem, but still leave the plank behind. :/

  5. Wow you remind me so much of someone I know it’s uncanny. I’m the opposite of you I’m a bit too confrontational especially with people I’m close to. What I’ve had to attempt doing is write to people and let them know I’m horrible at communicating so I wanted to write a letter and talk it over with them. Another thing that has helped me is realizing that I need to figure out my feelings and motives first before I even attempt to bring up something a bit sensitive with others. Because if things like arrogance or judgement are under the surface they will surely come out when someone disagrees with me blah! Or in your case it will further the frustration. Also if it’s something that the other person doesn’t care about you have to prepare yourself to be brushed off or completely ignored. Dealing with this stuff is a great way to practice humility and let go of that old man. The more you say “no” to your donkey the easier it gets to accept that people won’t always agree with you. I wish the bible showed us how Jesus related to the disciples and how he handled situations like this! I guess it’s left up to us to seek God and the Holy Spirit as to how we need to approach a situation. Don’t give up! God’s grace surely covers this stuff, so keep pulling that plank!

    • I do this! I have to write people usually because it gives me more time to think about my response and blesses me with the advantage of a backspace button!

  6. I struggle w/ this SO much!!! Glad to know I’m not alone. Another plank: I have been struggling a BUNCH w/ people that say they are believers but yet do not act like one in any way, shape, or form. I get angry and then start falling into that dangerous area of being a self righteous Pharisee type. Bleck. I have been noticing a bunch of verses about humility and self righteousness keep popping into my head lately though, so I am pullin’ the plank…but I, too, have some splinters left behind I’m afraid. :(

    • Oh man, that is probably my biggest issue right now living in the bible belt. Gives me anxiety. Sigh.

  7. So much like me! I am super anti-confrontational but I have this weird quality that usually forgives any offenses. On the other hand I constantly feel like my ideas and my voice are undermined and my skills abused. Like- everyone just takes me for the doormat that I am.

    I also hate being told what to do because I kinda think I’m smarter than anyone else. There, I said it. Now, I will humbly go post it on MY blog.

  8. Oh- I forgot to add that I have been seriously helped by the book Boundaries. It has helped me set up some limits in my own life- healthy God-led boundaries.

  9. Confronting people in a respectful way is the hardest of things, mostly not because we’re unable to approach them politely, but because they hardly seem interested in working around things. I don’t know, I’ve come to realize that, sometimes, quitting is the smartest decision.


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