Category Archives: Relationships

The Best Vengeance

 

 

 

It’s happened to all of us.

Abuses, injustices, offenses, treachery. Wounds we didn’t deserve. People – sometimes those closest to us – who don’t care to make it right.

What do you do, when your offenders have hurt, misused, and betrayed you? Acted in ways that no decent human should act. Trespassed boundaries, destroyed trust, taken away your rights, and thrown your happiness over the cliff?

Most of us would like to see justice done. We want reparation, and restoration of our peace. We want to see the wrong made right,  the adversary acknowledge their wrong,  see the immensity of their crime, and make amends.

Very sadly, this kind of healing does not always happen. We are often left alone with the heavy burden of pain, grief,  even rage, and no answer or relief appears in sight.

What do you do when the offender has no desire to change?

Sure, we can feel re-victimized, experience grief,  get very frustrated or angry, and feel spiteful against them. Don’t they deserve it, after all?

Have you ever noticed the result of such an attitude?  In my  experience, my posture of anger has never yielded the results I wanted.

I have come to see though, that when I choose a higher way, when I decide  to respond with  healthier behavior  than what they have demonstrated, it often seems to baffle them.

Sometimes changing yourself is the best vengeance you can get.

They don’t know what to do when someone  chooses  to not play the “React and Get Offended” game. They have little idea of  how to adjust to someone who treats them with undeserved mercy and a good example of maturity.

And guess what?

THIS is where I have seen the greatest results. I have seen my offenders change their ways, become friends instead of enemies, or sometimes, give up and move on, because I won’t accept the victim role any more.

I have also learned to question my own motives for revenge. What did I want to achieve by getting back at them? More pain, suffering, humiliation? Did I really want them to learn and grow past their destructive ways, into healthier behaviors, or just suffer for the damage they did to me?

In this searching, I have come to realize yet another truth. Vengeance is God’s right and domain. I cannot have the infinite knowledge to know why another person may decide not to change, or may choose to act in the destructive way they do. But God has chosen to offer redemption to them – and to me too – when we least deserved it. So, I have to let them go from my “You Owe Me” file,  and let God take care of them.

I have higher things to do, and so do you. . God has called us to greater things, and we need to expend more time in finding out what those things are, and put our passion and energy into developing those destinies. They will bring far greater happiness and growth, than getting bogged down thinking  about, and anticipating ‘payback’. Is this an easy process? No, but it’s a valuable one!

Don’t let your past woundings and offenses sabotage you from your greatest hopes, dreams and destinies being fulfilled.

Let go of yesterday, pray for those enemies, reconcile wherever possible, plan for a successful tomorrow, and choose to live joyfully today! Invest your energy into building your own dreams and destiny, and stop wasting precious time and resources in thinking negatively of those people, who  -incidentally – gain no benefit from it. Prayer will yield a far better chance for both of you to recover.

Dedicate your energy into redemption, which is making good things come out of evil circumstances. Recognise who the real enemy is here – the one who wants to destroy every person and every potential. Knowing  that the enemy would ruin you, God has provided for your release from the bondage of a painful past.

However, we can’y deny the situations that have occurred. None of us can minimize the pain and agony of some of these wounds. We certainly  must acknowledge them, grieve, deal with them and heal.   However, with surety, we then work onward towards our recovery and revival. Knowing that God has deeply concerned Himself with our restoration, enables us – if we want it – to give the unbearable weight of these woundings to Him.

Go free and forward into your own destiny and drop the heavy burdens of heartache, offenses and grudges behind you!

To pull this all together, when you pray for your enemies, “disconnect” the freightload of pain dragging you backwards.  Let it drop away,  then find your calling, and commit to maturing into your own giftings. That is the greatest  -and healthiest – form of retaliation known to humankind – to decide you will create good out of evil.

It is also one of the greatest blessings God has offered.  And it is free and available, to every one of us !

Don’t Judge? Why Not?

 

So, you see someone – your friend, co-worker, family member- doing something you think is really stupid. It irks you, concerns you, or just plain drives you crazy.

When do you say something?

CAN you say something?

Will it do any good anyhow?

If God says, “Don’t judge others, because in the way you give it out, it will be given back to you”, does this say we should never comment when we see our acquaintances doing things that cause problems?

The Bible goes on to say in Matthew 7, that we need to check our own face first. Often, what  accuse others of doing, is what we ourselves are guilty of doing.

Are you seeing incorrectly, however, even  if you may be doing the same thing yourself?  Not likely. You probably see very accurately.  So, here are the questions to ask yourself:

What is my motivation for judging? What do I hope to achieve by my criticism?

If your answer is, “Because I’m ticked off, and they really bug me with their behavior!”  don’t look for change anytime soon.

If your answer is, “Because, for the health of this relationship, and to see them succeed in life, I’d like to see them conquer this non-constructive habit. Perhaps there is something I can offer in order to help them progress.”  Now, there are grounds for change.

So, what is a strategy you can use?

God wants genuine prayers, from those with a heartfelt desire for constructive change.

 

Well, first of all, the Bible gives a few clues in Matthew 7.

First – and sometimes saddest – is to  Find out if the person is even interested to modify their destructive habits. If there is zero awareness of their need, or no desire to conduct themselves in a better way, then vs 6 implies, “Don’t even bother investing good material in a bad destination. It’s a waste of worthwhile time and effort, and even a risk to your safety”.   There is a time to persist,  a time to walk away, AND a time to leave the subject alone and work your strategy for awhile.  However, most of us give up FAR too quickly and easily. (More on this subject in another blog.)

Second – Ask God for help in this situation. He wants their success even more than you do. Sincere prayers offered for another person’s prosperity, are regarded by God.

Learn what you can do, that will bring life –not destruction to every person involved in the situation. Ask God for His wisdom to teach you and bring answers. He is for you, not against you.

Persist – don’t give up easily. Keep asking, educate yourself, keep looking for your clues, keep your eyes open, pursuing what is right and good. God wants genuine prayers, from those with a heartfelt desire for change.

Ask, seek, persist. This is the second strategy.

Thirdly, realize that if you know how to give good things to those in need – especially your own family – then God knows even more so how to provide for our necessities.

Realize and believe He wants to give you the answers you need, because He is a good God.

The Golden Rule

Lastly, what you want others to do for you, you do for them. For example, if you want respect from someone who treats you with contempt, then offer respect to them. If someone is selfish, or greedy, offer generosity. Treating your enemy in the opposite way they treat you, goes a long way towards breaking off an unacceptable or painful circumstance. This is VERY counter-intuitive, as we humans are more inclined to react and fight back with vindictive vengeance!

Responding in the opposite attitude is a very acquired skill.  It requires much practise and diligence. However, if our attitude is set to see productive – not destructive – progress, this skill can be the game-changer.

So, in summary:

  • Observe – does this person really want to change?
  • Ask God, Keep looking for answers, Persist – don’t give up – unless there is clearly no other answer.

 

  • Realize God is on the side of those who work to do right, and stick to the process.

 

  • Do for others what you want them to do for you.

 

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Remember, feelings will never remain consistent – Choice does.  True love for others is not an emotion. It is a decisive action first, and then the affection will follow. If we understand this dynamic alone, most of our relationships will change for the better.