I originally wrote this and included it in one of my Modest Monday posts….but I decided it needed to stand alone. So here it is, I am just recopying it 🙂
Allowing the Lord to Fight Battles
This week has been a crazy week here. We all had the flu and spent much of the week inside. It seemed as soon as one would get past it, another one would be down. My husband ended up getting it the worst and went to the ER where he was pumped full of fluids and monitored because he had gotten the anthrax vaccine on Monday, that made everything worse. So getting out and going to church today was wonderful! Last Sunday I missed with a sick kiddo, it is always refreshing to be back in the Lord’s house!
In Sunday school today we spoke about vengeance. How often do we want to yank that out of the Lord’s hands and take care of matters on our own! This can be from how we respond to people both in words and actions. It was a very convicting lesson honestly. I know at times we all struggle with this! It is so hard because while we may know what the scripture says about God taking care of things, we may not see the consequences of that persons actions, or what “justice” the Lord serves out. So us as the sinners we are, we want to see instant gratification our self. OUCH!!!
There is a word that was brought up in our lesson, its kinda ugly! PATIENCE. Yes, sisters, patience. Instead of worrying about vengeance and taking matters into our own hands, instead of the I WILL SHOW YOU attitude, we need to just take a deep breath, sit back, and have patience. AGAIN OUCH!! I have always struggled with patience and we are tested each day on this fruit of the spirit!
You may be reading this and wondering, well wait!!! Why shouldn’t I get vengeance…if I don’t take care of matters I am going to get walked on! Well, honestly it just starts a cycle of hurt and hate. We need to stand firm and yield to God’s leadership. We all struggle with the natural responses to being wronged. God however is much better at this then we are. He knows what will work, when it will work, and what changes a heart.
When we leave retaliation in God’s hands:
1. We end the cycle of violence.
Look at Joseph as an example. He was wronged by his brothers. Years later he could have killed them. But he chose to forgive and work to restore his family. Let’s look at scripture…
If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink: For thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the Lord shall reward thee. Proverbs 25:21-22
2. We express faith that God will be just.
Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Romans 12:17-19
This verse says to not repay evil for evil but to instead do what is honorable.
3. We are to follow the example of Jesus. Goes back to the saying WWJD. What Would Jesus Do.
For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. 1 Peter 2:21-24
Jesus was reviled. He has left us HIS example so that we can follow in his footsteps.
We can sit and say patience is not a virtue of ours. I know I sure have!!! However, patience is not a spiritual gift to be exercised by a few. it is a fruit of the spirit to be demonstrated by all Christians.( Galatians 5:22) Patience is a choice, not a feeling. patience is evidence of God’s love inside of us.( 1 Corinthians 13:4) Choosing patience strengthens our heart.( James 5:8)
God’s justice may take time. But like the farmer who waits on the early and late rain, we can trust that in due season, God will make all things right.
Christ paid the ultimate sacrifice for us, trust him to keep his promise that he will make all things work for the good of those who serve him.