Who offends you? And why?
If you’re a Christian like me, you probably can rattle off a list of ten things without even trying. Living in this fallen world, it’s difficult to go through a day without being insulted in some way..rude people, distasteful ads, sex, drugs, homelessness, the news, greed, pride. The list just goes on and on. But why are you offended? Are you offended because it’s horrific and sinful behavior and only serves to show how evil this world really is? Or is it more visceral? Are you offended because it (or they) have personally offended you in some way? Did the rude encounter with another person take something away from you…time or money or space or? Was it really your time or money or space to begin with? Didn’t God give you every breath, every beat of your heart, every second of this day? Didn’t He plan that encounter with that person who just offended you and weren’t you protected and provided for by Him? Or, in another extreme, wasn’t that encounter planned in order to show YOU something about yourself or give you a chance to glorify Him with your behavior and choices? Can you possibly tell me that God isn’t aware of every single solitary moment of your day and is purposefully placing you where He wants you in order to sanctify you into a better likeness of His Son Jesus? I mean, He counts every tear and is aware of every hair on your head…can you really believe He wasn’t in on that situation that has gotten you all sideways and caused you to lose your temper, swear, growl, or otherwise behave badly?
In the words of an awesome teacher, Mike Wells–“Be offended until you are no longer offended.” What exactly does THAT mean? Well, exactly this….you are a child of The King. There is no one or nothing on this earth that should make you forget that. There is nothing that can snatch you from His hand. You are destined for Home and by that I mean Heaven. We are just travelers here, sojourners for a season until we are taken Home where there is no sadness or sin and only peace and we will spend our days glorifying and giving praise to Our Almighty Creator. So, tell me again why you’re offended? Tell me again why you don’t think that God already has a handle on everything that’s going on? Rationalize once more why you are validated by losing your temper and looking like every other pagan who hasn’t accepted Christ because the situation was just that bad.
Okay. And once you’re done being ridiculous and making your excuses, I suggest you hit your knees and repent. Because He told us to love our enemies. Yes…every single one of them. He told us life would be a struggle and we would have troubles. Did you think He didn’t mean it? Or maybe He wasn’t talking to you? I suggest you remember to whom you belong…our Great and Mighty King and Creator and Sovereign Provider and Protector who will let nothing happen to you that He doesn’t approve of and can’t use for His Glory. Trust me…the devil is looking for examples to show that we Christians are just hypocrites. That we are fools for following Christ and he would like to do nothing less than discredit Jesus by forcing us to lose our tempers and show our pride and greed and selfishness. Don’t fall into his schemes.
Be offended. Until you can no longer be offended. Until you place your trust and your strength and your day into His more-than-capable hands. Until you realize that Jesus came to gather ALL his sheep into His fold and that He loves us ALL. It is never to late to repent and come to salvation as long as you draw breath, and that goes for your worst enemy as well. So the next time you get offended, take a breath, say a prayer of thanksgiving and praise, and relax. God’s got this. And soon, you may find it a little harder to come up with any reasons at all to be offended. How glorifying is that to our Good and Perfect King?