Friday, September 6, 2013
Turn the other cheek?
Anybody else experiencing difficulty in relationships? Okay, maybe we aren't being physically assaulted but what about verbally assaulted, perhaps subtle criticism & accusation, or maybe not so subtle. Let's just say that words can hurt us! So, honestly now, is one of our first reactions to hurl back something critical or accusing or hurtful? What kind of thoughts do we have toward a person who is causing us pain by their words,or thoughts if we know them well, against us? Defensive, maybe? Okay, let's look at some words from Jesus in Mathew 5:38 "You have heard that it was said, 'AN EYE FOR AN EYE AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH.' But I say to you, do not resist him who is evil; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also. Jesus goes on to make the point about loving & praying for our enemies. Now I would like to look at another Bible passage which instructs us to AVOID evil people. 2 Timothy 3:1 " But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving....avoid such men as these." Are you noticing that these characteristics could be rather subtle and would likely take some time, prayer, & discernment to recognize as deeply ingrained traits. I mean it would be far easier to recognize and AVOID (maybe as in run away from) an evil person who slaps us on the cheek, or a drug addict, or murderer. But UNGRATEFUL??? Isn't that all of us some of the time? Well I don't have any easy answers for you & I'm mostly sharing what is on my mind currently. I do know that if we really want to discover God's will in our relationships, we will pray & study His Word. He WILL give us the wisdom & discernment to do His will! If we continue to read in 2 Timothy 3, we find suggestions that true Christians endure hardships & persecutions and that there are impostors in the church who cause trouble, but it's God Who reveals evil. We can trust God to guide us. We mostly need to ask Him to cleanse our hearts & motives. It's what He wants to do for us...if we are willing. Love & prayers, in Jesus, Cynthia