June 19, 2021

Petty Revenge

What sorrow awaits you who lie awake at night, thinking up evil plans. You rise at dawn and hurry to carry them out, simply because you have the power to do so.
Micah 2:1 (NLT)
There's a web community called reddit that consists of thousands of different sections—called subs—that people can join and discuss. There are subs dedicated to different TV shows, books, musicians, topics, etc. I have an account there (it's free) and some of the subs I joined talk about Cleveland, Reformed theology, Lord of the Rings, and maps

When you go to the reddit website, the right-hand column shows you popular subs that you might be interested in, and I noticed one the other day called pettyrevenge, which (as you might have guessed) discusses how people have gotten—or are planning—revenge for some slight, real or imagined. It has over a million members. Some of the posts there deal with not getting enough salad, having to pay HOA fees, unpopular teachers... you get the picture.

In her book Gilead, Marilynne Robinson wrote, “I have always liked the phrase 'nursing a grudge' because many people are tender of their resentments as of the thing nearest their hearts.” What a marvelous take on human nature! How many nights do some people lie awake, obsessing over some offense they've received and planning how to get back at the offender... or thinking about what they should have said. There are those who hold so many grudges from the past that they don't have time for a meaningful life.

Jesus taught us the way out of the vicious cycle of giving and receiving offense: Servanthood. Instead of plotting for revenge or demonstrating our power over others, we should think about how best to serve them. Service is seldom respected by the crassest among us, but it makes us great in the kindom of God. Instead of positioning ourselves for power, we should place ourselves in the service of others. And rather than plot revenge, we should find new ways to forgive. For we are not little tyrants, but children of the Most High.

You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant.
 Matthew 20:25-26
Prayer after thinking about today's devotion:
O my God, make me happy this day in thy service. Let me do nothing, say nothing, desire nothing, which is contrary to thy will. Give me a thankful spirit, and a heart full of praise for all that thou hast given me, and for all thou hast withheld from me.
 Ashton Oxenden
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After your own thanksgivings & petitions, close with the Lord's Prayer.
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1 comment:

  1. This is a discipline that should be emphasized in the education system...our schools! I have a saying that I had printed on bumper stickers to give out..."I support Good Order and Discipline (GOD) in our schools!" Want one?

    ReplyDelete