Thursday, April 21, 2016

Doing Right While Being Done Wrong 4/21/2016

"But Jesus said to him, 'Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?'  When those who were around Him saw what was going to happen, they said, 'Lord, shall we strike with the sword?'  And one of them struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his right ear.  But Jesus answered and said, 'Stop! No more of this.' And He touched his ear and healed him." Luke 22:48-51

Almost without fail, our natural reaction to being offended or wronged is to retaliate. It is practically an automatic response.  The fact is that many parents, Christians among them, teach their children from the earliest age to hit back if someone hits them first, rather than "turn the other cheek."  This and other teaching builds into how we handle conflict as adults.

This said, it is not suggested that we should refrain from teaching our children to avoid conflict and/or defend themselves nor that we should not do similarly, however, offered for your consideration is the example of Jesus.  He was under near constant scrutiny, threat, persecution and intent to harm once he began his ministry in earnest.  Nevertheless, he never deviated from his mission to seek and save you and me.  Even as he was betrayed and accosted by soldiers with clubs and swords, he still advocated for peace and would see no one harmed despite what he faced.

Beloved, let us always think twice about how we react.  Let us remember the Christianity that we claim, the God that we serve, the Son who saves us and all of the thinking and behavior that goes with it.  Let us also consider the relative smallness of the things that cause us injury or offense, yet how easily and quickly we respond.  It is easy to talk the Christian talk but quite another thing to walk the Christian walk.  And though we may suffer in the name of the Lord personally, great good can come of it.  Peter wrote, "But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed.  Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened" 1 Pet 4:14.  He further states, "So then, those who suffer according to God's will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good." 1 Pet 4:19.  This is what Jesus did.

Practically speaking,


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