We've been reflecting on the passages of Roman 12 these past few days and we have already learned so much as to how God wants us to deal with conflict.
In quick review, we've looked at ways to live harmoniously with one another (Romans 12:16)
- Practice humility (second half of Romans 12:16)
- We talked about being honorable and not repaying evil for evil. (Romans 12:17)
- And we also looked at being peaceable as much as humanly possible. (Romans 12:18)
You'd think we covered all the things we can about dealing with conflict and getting along with others, but to the contrary, since we are such disagreeable humans, Paul has a few more pointers for us to look at.
Today, we move on to Romans 12:19.
"Beloved, do not avenge yourselves. But instead, give place to wrath; for it is written, Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.
(I love it when he calls us "beloved")
This verse is telling us to forgive and let God take over. This verse was explained to me like this. We are God's children and we are loved. He will not permit anything to happen to us that cannot be turned around for good. Set aside your anger (wrath) and let God take care of things. Trust the matter to God who is the judge of all things. When we try to take care of things ourselves, thereby taking it out of God's hands. We can't see the grand scheme of things. We are very near-sighted when it comes to feeling we have been wronged. God will take care of it in His time. For those that deserve to be punished, God knows their heart and will see to it.
Don't allow vengeful thoughts take up another moment in your mind. The longer you hold on to those thoughts, the more bitterness and hate has the opportunity to spread. Let go and let God... he knows your pain. Your job is to forgive. Avenge not. Forgive and let God do his work.
Are you having trouble with holding on to hurts? Let us know how we can help and pray for you!
Anyone have other suggestions of how to let go and move on? Post in the comments!!
Continuing on our look at Romans Twelve and how it helps us to be mediators of our homes and lives, we have made it to Romans 12:17.
"Repay no evil for evil, respect what is honorable in the sight of all men."
Don't take every little grievance to heart. Don't be so defensive that you are actually creating more of an issue than was there before. Think before you speak. Can the "offense" be taken out of context? Could the other person just be having a bad day? Could they have wrong information?
Look for the good in all people. Pride is at the bottom of this verse as well. Don't let pride creep in and cause you to stand in judgement of others. Be kind and forgiving. Focus on their positive attributes and not on their shortcomings.
Take the high road.
This little piece of advice was given to me at a time when I felt like I was under attack. My friend would rattle off the verses of Romans 12, but in a nutshell, it boils down to this. Take the high road. People are going to be unkind, annoying and even cruel. We have no control of any of that. But, no matter what, always take the high road. Do not be reduced to evil for evil but be honorable even in the darkest of times. Returning hate with more hate only creates more hate. Be the stronger person and bring the resolution.
Have you had a time when you just had to bite your tongue and walk away so as not to devour the person who is causing you harm in any number of ways? Share what you did to take the high road!
Continuing in our study of mediating our household and selves, we take on the second part of Romans 12:16
Romans 12: 16 "Do not have a high opinion of yourself, but be in agreement with common people. Never be wise in your own conceits."
Keep humility in mind when you are dealing with the people you love. How can you have an argument when you admit that you are human and fallible. Keep a humble opinion of yourself and be open to listening.
Never get yourself in the position that you feel you are too important to listen to the cries of others. Be it your children, your spouse, your friends, your co-workers. Do not be so proud that you refuse to look inward at your own misgivings and ignore the grievances of others.
Sometimes when we are the ones who have been hurt, we can see pride rear up as well. We forget that forgiveness is absolutely essential. We can feel that the other person doesn't "deserve" to be heard, or forgiven because of what they have done. But the truth is that none of us DESERVE to be forgiven, for we have all sinned and we are all guilty of hurting others.
I know it might sting a bit, but take a breath and be willing to listen. Then be willing to forgive.
What are your feelings on humility? Give us your feedback below!
Elizabeth Bourgeret is a life coach, author and she is the creator of the teen life skills event called Total Truth Workshop and the Leading With Love Series of books, workshops and coaching.