Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Connection

Last week Mike led worship in North Orlando and the preacher spoke on Romans 12:3-21. I jotted down a few thoughts he shared that rang out in my soul:

- A lack of humility is what causes relational stress. See vs 3.

- Do you bring peace or chaos to your relationships? See vs 18.

- If you do not pursue love, you will be overcome with evil. See vs 21. (Whoa! That's a big thought!)

And the one that struck me the most was this one;

- Pray for God's favor on people who are cruel to you. See vs 14.

The speaker paused here for a while and talked about several reasons why we are to do this and while he was talking the Lord led my mind to another verse in Romans that says it's God's kindness that leads to repentance.

And there was the connection.

When someone is ugly to you, if you ask God to be kind to them, that's what leads them to change.

This is what we see from Jesus on the cross when He said "Father forgive them." It is truly one of the opposites in His Kingdom that doesn't seem to come natural to our flesh. Our human nature wants to retaliate. To get even and payback. To show we are stronger. To have power and be in control. Our pride says we have something to prove.

But the truth of the scriptures says to not stand up to an evil person. That if someone slaps your right cheek, give the left. If you are forced to go one mile, instead go two. To relinquish our rights. To disregard the idea of fair. To forsake our selfish thoughts of entitlement. To surrender power and control.

Surrendering power and control is nearly impossible if we have the idea that we are yielding to our offender. But when we come to know who we are in Christ, and that it is Him we are entrusting all power and control to, then and only then can we realize that we don't have to prove anything nor have anything to prove. Except that our humility brings His kindness which brings their repentance which brings glory to the King - the only one who is stronger, who has power and who is worthy of being in control.

Lord Jesus, I am baffled and perplexed that in Your infinite wisdom you use the humble and lowly to demonstrate your Kingdom and love. I submit to you. You alone are wise. May I be a connection of You to those You have placed around me.

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