Dealing with Offense - Part Two

I don't know about you friends, but when I am offended, no matter the subject or reason, I have ONE gut reaction.  And it is not holy or right or good.  It is PURE human sin.

I want to DEFEND.  Defend my reasons, my choices, my actions, my family, my beliefs.  It doesn't matter what it is, offense leads to defense, every single time.

I am going to guess that I am not alone here.  It's ok, you don't have to answer.  I know.

But.  Inasmuch as it's our choice to be offended, it is also our choice to be defensive.  

Do you know what defense does?  It makes me such a loud, obnoxious horn that God can not be seen in me.  No one is looking at me, all hot and bothered and worked up like a chicken proclaiming a falling sky, and seeing Jesus.  It's just not happening.

You know what does give Him a chance to shine?  Keeping myself still.  And quiet.  And allowing Him to be my defense.  If we are right, He will handle it.  If we are wrong, He will handle us. 

The Lord will fight FOR you, you need only be STILL.  Exodus 14:14

And we can't push it either.  Our time {FAST, DO IT NOW} is not His time {the RIGHT time}. 

For now, just be quiet.

And in that quiet do these things.

Acknowledge that you were offended.  Kept in the dark it WILL grow into something ugly.  It's okay to admit that something hurt your feelings.  That has nothing to do with others and everything to do with you.

Keep in mind you have a choice.  Be offended or not?  That IS the question.

Let the Lord be your defense.  You suck at it anyway and He is the creator of the universe.  Let Him do His thing! 

Remember that you are dead to the power of sin...offense or defense.  God says so.  It only has the power over us that WE give it.

In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Romans 6:11

Forgive.  Forgive.  Forgive.  And keep in mind that forgiveness is a one person, repeat as necessary deed.  You don't need an apology to forgive.  You don't need a response or to be told you are right.  Just forgive and get the heck out of that darkness.  

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.  Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.  Colossians 3:12-13

And above all keep in mind that God can and will override the ill will of others.  He did it for Joseph and he can do it for you.  

Keep a cool head and behave in such a way that peace flows over you and your integrity remains intact.  You will be glad you did.  

Offense will pass.  Regret lasts forever.      

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