Two Wrongs do not Make a Right


peace lily 

See that none render evil for evil unto any man;

but ever follow that which is good,

both among yourselves, and to all men.”

 1 Thessalonians 5:15 

Have you ever been mistreated?

Has someone ever done something that hurt your feelings?

Maybe someone says something unkind to you. 

What is your first response?

If we are all honest with ourselves we will admit that the first thing we want to do is to give that unkindness right back to them. If someone says something unkind or treats us in a way that hurts us, our first response is normally one of defense. We put our dukes up and we are ready for battle. 

Many times the wrongs done to us go unnoticed. Often times the one who hurts us never even realizes what they have done or said. 

I know in my own life I have said or done things that have hurt someone who I love and never realized it until it was brought to my attention.

Many times in life we are going to be hurt by another person’s words or actions and it will be up to us to decide how we are going to handle each situation.

I would urge you to first bathe the situation in prayer. I have found many times in my life in which I prayed about a wrong that was done to me and God took care of it without a word ever being said about it.

There have been other times, however, when I prayed about a situation and I felt that God wanted me to take it to that person and discuss it. Thankfully, with God’s help, the situation was resolved.

Whichever way God sees fit for you to handle a situation, I can assure you of this one thing: Two wrongs do not make a right. No matter how badly we may want to lash out and strike back at the one who has hurt us, this is never God’s plan. I know sometimes it seems like the easy thing to do and as humans it is what we want to do. But, God has a better plan.

God has told us in Romans 12:18: “If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men.” God desires for us to do our best to keep the peace with other people. Sometimes this means praying about the situation, letting go and letting God handle it. Other times it means speaking your piece and leaving the results up to God. 

I want to encourage your heart today. When we are wronged by word or deed, it hurts. I understand this. But God has told us to never repay evil with evil. Two wrongs do not make a right. If you have been wronged, cover it in prayer. Seek God’s will in each situation and allow God to lead you in the way that He would have you handle it. I can promise you this, any situation we face will ultimately turn out better when God is allowed to take control rather than us trying to fix it ourselves. Remember: With God, all things are possible.(Matthew 19:26)

 

 

 

God Will Take Care of You


A sparrow in Malta. In Malta the resident spar...

 “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father.But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.” Matthew 10: 29-31

I awoke with a song on my heart and felt that it was the right thing to share today. I believe that God lays things on my heart about which to write that not only speak to me, but that also speak to you, my readers.

I do not know what you are going through today, but I want to take time this morning to encourage you. I want you to know that no matter what you are going through…

God will take care of you.

Life Is Not Always Fair


Rain That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” Matthew 5:45

Have you ever had something happen and you thought, “That is not fair!” I think we can safely say that, yes, we have all felt that way at some point. I, for one, am guilty of this more than I would like to admit. Why do bad things happen to good people? Why do good things happen to bad people? These are questions I find myself asking over and over again.

God does not always offer an explanation as to why certain things happen. Sometimes God simply tells us to trust Him. We can not see things as God does. We do not understand the things of this world as God does. We have been granted limited understanding, and limited vision of the lives we live.

What are we to do then? How do we respond when a situation arises that we feel is unfair? What do we do when something happens that we do not understand? We trust God. We focus our attention on doing what God’s word tells us, as Christians, to do and we leave the things we do not understand up to God.

In Matthew 6: 25 Jesus tells us: “Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?” Jesus is telling us here not to worry. He is telling us to leave the things we do not understand up to Him. He is whispering to us, “Trust Me.”

I believe there is something else we are told to do. In Matthew 6:33 Jesus says:But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

God has called us to trust Him, to put our faith in His plan for our lives, and then to live for Him. God knows that we can not understand everything that happens in this life. We can, however, give those things to Him and seek to glorify God with the lives we live.

Sometimes things happen in this world that we do not understand. The important thing to remember is that God is in control. No matter how crazy life may seem, no matter how unfair a situation may feel, God knows and He has a plan. Let us focus on living our lives as God has commanded us to, and leaving the things we do not understand up to the One who created it all and set it all in motion in the first place.

I pray these words have encouraged you today. I pray that we will remember these verses, and remember to place our faith in God’s plan for our lives. Even if we do not understand it all, we can find comfort in knowing that we serve a God who does.

Motivational Monday: Do You Have a Case?


Matthew 7 20Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.”

Matthew 7:20

I was talking, yesterday, with a family friend who came to speak at our church. In our conversation this question was brought up: “If you were arrested for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?”

The more I thought about this question, the more it made sense to me.

I do not know a lot about the judicial system. I do know that in order to try a case, you first must have enough evidence to prove your case. If you can collect enough evidence to back up your claim, then you may proceed with your case.  If not, it will then be thrown out, due to a lack of evidence.

So let me ask you this same question, “Can you prove your case?”

Many of us do not know what it is like to be persecuted for our faith. Hopefully none of us will ever have to experience this, but let us just imagine for a moment that we did find ourselves in a place where we were being placed on trial for our faith. I am concerned that in the age in which we live, we could be closer to experiencing this than we would like to imagine.

Imagine you are sitting in church one Sunday Morning, and before you know it there are men standing next to you, guns in hand, accusing you of being a Christian. They have been told that you claim to be a Christian, and they are there to arrest you for this very reason. Would they have enough evidence to convict you on this charge?

In the verse that I have chosen to use today, Jesus is warning against false prophets. He says that a good tree can not bring forth bad fruit, just as a bad tree can not bring forth good fruit. (vs. 18)

What kind of fruit do you bear?

What kind of evidence would your fruit give in your case as  a Christian?

I pray that none of us will ever be placed on trial for our faith, however, if I am ever tried for my faith, I pray that God’s light will shine through me so brightly that no argument has to be made and that no discussion is necessary. I pray that those around me will see the love of God shining through me.

What about you?

Do you have a case?

If you were on trial for your faith, would there be enough evidence to convict you of being a child of God?

No Cost Too Great


photo by: Flickr

photo by: Flickr

6″And when Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper,a woman came to Him having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table.But when His disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, “Why this waste?For this fragrant oil might have been sold for much and given to the poor.” 10 But when Jesus was aware of it, He said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a good work for Me.11 For you have the poor with you always, but Me you do not have always.12 For in pouring this fragrant oil on My body, she did it for My burial.13 Assuredly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her.”

                                     Matthew 26:6-13

How much does this cost? This is a question that we hear a lot these days due to the economy. We oftentimes find ourselves asking it as well, whether it be paying bills, buying groceries, or even taking the kids out to eat.

I believe it is a legitimate concern since we want to be good stewards with the blessings God has bestowed upon us. But what about when it comes to our service for God? Do you ever find yourself asking, “What is serving God going to cost me?”

When this thought first crossed my mind, my immediate response was, “Of course not!” but as I searched my heart further and I was honest with myself I discovered that, yes, I do ask this question more times than I should.

It should not matter what serving God will cost us. We are so important to God that He sent His Son to die on a cruel cross for our sins. We should be willing to give up anything that is needed of us in order to serve God.

As scary as that sounds, I have grown to understand that we can not out-give God. Whether we give of our time or our finances, God is faithful to supply our needs.  Philippians 4:19 says:

“But my God shall supply all your need

according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

The lady in this story was giving to God all that she had. She did not consider the cost. She did what she could to bring honor and glory to God.

As I read this Scripture and have continued to ponder it in my heart, I have discovered some changes that need to take place in my own way of thinking. Possibly you have too.

I pray today if you find yourself concerned with the cost of ministering for Jesus or serving Him, that you will think back to these verses and remember the sacrifice that Jesus made for us. John 3:16 tells us:

by: depositphotos.com

by: depositphotos.com

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,

that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

I have made the commitment this morning to stop focusing on what serving God will cost me. I do not want to be so concerned with the cost of serving God that I miss an opportunity to bless others. I want to share God’s love with those around me no matter what I must give up.

I pray today that you will join me in this commitment. I can promise that you will not be sorry. I am reminded of the Scripture that is found in Matthew 6:19-20

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth,

where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.

But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy,

and where thieves do not break in and steal.”

One day all these earthly things will pass away and all that will matter is what we did for God’s glory.

There is a quote that I was recently reminded of as I helped one of my students work on a literature report. It is by Jim Elliot,  a missionary who was killed while ministering to the Auca Indians in Ecuador. Jim said:

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep

to gain that which he cannot lose.”

I pray that these words will find you encouraged and inspired this morning to continue to minster for God’s Glory.