And that’s just what they’ll do
I was at the receiving end of an incredibly lengthy, hurtful, unwarranted and just really unkind text rant earlier today. We’ve all heard the saying – hurting people, hurt people. If you’re a human being walking the face of the earth, you’ve been at both ends of this pain. But why? Why do we lash out at people we love and strangers alike? Because we’re human. Because we can. Because, we shouldn’t… but we do it anyway. It’s too complicated a question for me to even begin to delve into in my little bitty blog. So let’s talk about what I do know. My reaction.
I can only guess this person’s pain because it’s not mine. Even though, I happen to have a pretty good idea of what those issues are because they were included in the texts. But because I am not this person, it would be unfair to assume I knew the whole story. That is outside of my control. And honestly, between this person and God.
I was completely blindsided (and innocent) today. This person lashed out at me because of a situation that has grown out of control in his/her life. And because this person had access to me. Even though I wasn’t responsible and couldn’t change the situation, this person made the decision to target me today. What I have that this person doesn’t have is a relationship with Jesus Christ. This makes this a completely unfair fight, if I chose to make it a fight. But it also means I have a greater responsibility and that is to react in love.
WHAT IS WITHIN MY CONTROL, IS MY REACTION.
In Romans 12:18, Paul tells us that If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Sometimes, that feels easier said than done. But we have to try.
- Stay calm: The Word also tells us in James 1:20 that “Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.” I don’t know about you, but want to produce righteousness that God DOES desire. There are warnings after warning about the dangers of anger in God’s Word. Remember Paul’s words in Ephesians 4:27, that anger gives a foothold to the devil.
- Forgive: In Luke 17:3-4, Jesus warns us to forgive. “So watch yourselves. “If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.”
- Apologize: If we are to live in peace, we should apologize if necessary. Search your heart. Know that if you played any part, you need to accept your responsibility.
- Move on: It’s done. Let it go. Move on. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. (Colossians 3:2)
Walk in love
I don’t advocate being a doormat. In fact, I took actions to block the digital abuse I received today. I cried a little. Remained calm. Prayed. Forgave. And blocked a phone number and Facebook user. I can forgive, but I don’t have to allow this to happen again. I didn’t return those cruel texts with more cruelty. It would have been self-serving and frankly, it likely would have fallen on deaf ears. Believe me, my flesh cried out for me to say and do lots of things my heart and Spirit knew were wrong. But that’s not who I am. I am a child of God, a daughter of the King. So I took a deep breath, straightened out my crown, and moved on.
blessed to be a blessing
So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Galatians 6:9