Skip to main content

A hard pill to swallow

 Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord. (Leviticus 19:18)

We have a lot of things in this life that we 'seek', but not all of them are to be 'attained' - especially when the thing we seek is revenge. God wants us to know there is but one who 'metes out' justice. The issue with 'revenge' when we seek it or take it - we aren't 'portioning out' justice - we are concerned with ensuring the individual we have issue with receives a portion of not so great stuff! Bearing a grudge is a very easy thing and it is a more common occurrence with our peers than we may realize. Why? We haven't learned to let go when we feel we have been 'wronged' by another. It could be we 'feel' we are 'deserved' a different outcome, but if we hold onto what we 'feel' at that moment, we open the doorway to bitterness developing a stronghold. This is why God warns his people very early on in their relationship with him - don't seek revenge - let go of the wrongs done against you.

Love your neighbor - we have to be told this, but do we have to be told to love ourselves? Sometimes we need to hear both because we have not developed a great sense of 'liking' ourselves. If you struggle to 'like' some part of your character, you are not alone. Many have something in their character that 'bugs' them a bit - from their quickness to jump to conclusions to something within their appearance. How can these things keep us from loving our neighbor? If we are honest, we are critical of the things in others that we see as flaws in our own character, or else we become disgruntled that another is 'better' in some sense than we see ourselves.

You and I bring those things to Christ and he reminds us we are made in his image. To some, that is a hard pill to swallow - because we see those things that 'bug us' and we don't understand how he brings anything good out of them. When I learned I could take my tendency to be fearful of those things I don't fully appreciate in my character and turn them into kind ways of helping others, I realized Christ could use those things. I found I didn't need to be sarcastic as a means to 'cover up' flaws in my character because when I am, I negate the good work God wants to do in that area as he works to bring beauty out of ashes in that area of my life.

Next time you begin to consider the things in your character that aren't exactly as 'good' as you'd like them to be, take them to Jesus instead of finding fault in others who reveal that same character in themselves. In time, you will come to see what God is doing in you and guess what - - - he is probably doing something similar in those others who bug you with very similar character flaws. God isn't going to exact revenge - he is going to show us and those others how his justice brings out the best in each of us. Love him first, then let him show you how to love others as we come to love ourselves "IN HIM". Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

Scrubbed Up and Ready to Go!

Have you ever considered just how 'clean' your hands really are? In nursing school, I remember this exercise we did where we rubbed hand lotion on our hands, then were told to go scrub them to practice a good handwashing technique. Most of us were going the extra mile by scrubbing back and front, in between the fingers and then even up above the wrist area. Surely our hands were clean, right? We came back to the room for the 'inspection' of our handwashing jobs only to find our instructor had turned the lights off, had a black light set up, and inspected our hands under that glowing beast! Guess what else 'glowed'? Our hands! The lotion was 'laced' with this 'dust' that illuminates under the black light, allowing each of us to see the specific areas around cuticles, under nails, and even here and there on our hands that got totally missed by our good 'handwashing' technique! What we thought was clean really wasn't clean at all. Clean