Monday, July 21, 2008
Are you easily offended?
About a month ago, one of the pastors of our church preached on 'offense'. He challenged us as believers to let upsetting things roll off- like water off a duck's back. He reminded that a mark of a solid believer...one who is founded in Christ and finds true solace in Him, is not offended to the point of sin.
Seriously, though- how many times a day are we really offended over such trivial things? If I am allowing the Holy Spirit to work through me on a daily basis (even in the little things), I will show traits of joy, patience, self-control and gentleness. How many times, though, am I grumpy, irritated, undisciplined and angry!?
For instance- case in point; I came home the other day to a plethora of emails and one in particular shook me up a little. I received a note from an friend that seemed a little on the 'arrogant' side and it just ticked-me-off. I mentioned it to my husband as I was reading it. Then I mentioned it at dinner. And then I mentioned it at bedtime- to which he turned to me (in his best loving husband way) and said, "Dear, you are allowing this to offend you too easily You have moved from the point of "irritation" to sin. Ask forgiveness and let it go..."
Oh, how right he is!
I was again reminded a couple days ago in the parking lot of my ease for being irritated. I had been waiting for a parking spot when I lady hurriedly tried to cross in front of me. I quickly stopped and allowed her to pass. All of a sudden her quick gait turned into a Sunday stroll and I waited and waited and waited. Then- wonder of all wonders- she turned her cart INTO the spot I was waiting for and parked it. And turned and looked at me with an irritated expression and begin to 'mouth' her annoyance. HER annoyance! Her big 'ole cart is in MY spot!
Why did I allow my offense to turn to sin? Sure, she was inconsiderate, but why wasn't my first reaction to show kindness or gentleness? I want to come to the place that I allow the goodness of the Holy Spirit to be free-flowing...even when my flesh is frustrated! Oh, that I might be a vessel of His faithfulness!