Devotional, fight the good fight, grace, Holiness, In the trials, Narrow way, sacrifice

How do you respond?

If someone insults or hurts us or those we love it’s very easy to react in the heat of the moment unless we’re…’kept by the power of God.’

David is a good example of this. He’d protected Nabal’s shepherds and sheep in the wilderness and later when he had need he sent a peaceful message to Nabal asking if he could spare him some food.

Nabal, instead of being grateful for all David had done, sent back a message insulting David.

This was when David reacted in anger. He didn’t pray or seek wisdom from God but took 400 of his men to go and destroy Nabal and His men.

Abigail, Nabal’s wife, in her God given wisdom, hearing of this, took food and went to meet David and his men to plead for mercy.

Through her gracious words David’s eyes were opened to see his sin. Yes he had been insulted but as a child of God he wasn’t to react in revenge but in love. Christ set us the perfect example of this…

‘Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:’

And God did judge righteously, eleven days later, Nabal died.

Friends, we’ve all said words we’ve regretted, we’ve all reacted in anger rather than love and we’ve all been hurt by the words and deeds of others. So let’s be looking to God to keep us by His power and to give us grace so that we might respond to evil with good and respond to hurtful words with love just as Jesus did.

‘Recompense to no man evil for evil…If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men…Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

Will this be easy? No, or at least not all the while we try in our own strength and we haven’t been promised easy but we have been promised God’s help

These words are at the end of Romans 12, a chapter that begins with these words…

‘I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.’

It will often feel like a sacrifice to follow the example of Jesus. We’ll have to sacrifice our will and the reaction our old nature wants to give BUT it’s not an unreasonable ask because God’s grace IS sufficient and His way is the way of peace and true joy!

1 Peter 1:5, 2:23, Rom 12:17-21.

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