Can I admit to you today that I am seriously on the struggle bus with this issue of offense? Getting offended way too easily. Wearing your feelings on your shoulders. Taking things way too personally when the entire situation had no intention to even really hurt me at all? Someone says something behind your back. Someone makes a sarcastic comment and then jokes it off while you dwell on it for days wondering if that's how they really feel. Someone forgets to text you back and you assume the worst about your friendship.
And I think the beauty in this personal struggle of mine is just that. It's not really personal at all, because haven't we as women all found ourselves at some point walking offense like this? Allowing the enemy to plant that deep seed of bitterness that turns into resentment that somehow festers into hate. This entire process only robs us of the joy of our hope in Jesus and of the purpose we find in living for Him because walking in offense takes the focus off of Jesus and places it on ourselves.
I don't know about you, but there's nothing good IN me apart from the One who LIVES in me. I want my life reflecting Him and that includes having His reflection in the way I respond to people during moments that could warrant some serious offending going on in my spirit.
I scrolled by a post the other day that has had me turned upside down in my perspective of this idea. This idea of actually being able to choose to not walk constantly allowing others to offend me. It was a quote by Lysa TerKerst that read...
"It's easier to give grace when I remember how much I need grace."
Ahhh. Cuts me deep just reading it again, because how many times have I let my flesh get the best of me? How many times have I hurt people closest to me with my words? How many times have I had bad days and allowed those days to spill over into my other relationships? Who knows the people I offended when I didn't have the strength to wave or lift my head in those low moments. Who knows what someone is walking through when your moment of offense takes place.
Jesus is calling me to walk humble and this requires me to walk with my eyes on Jesus and my heart fixed on how desperately I need Him and His grace covering all of MY offenses. And man. Let's not even begin to list those off. Too many to count. Too many times have I hurt the Lord by my choices and yet still, He pours out loving grace on me. He doesn't respond sarcastically. He doesn't cut me off cold shoulder. He doesn't unfriend me :( ,He doesn't walk away. He doesn't grow bitter and angry. Thank you God that you are always desiring to pour grace and more grace upon me when I least deserve it.
And thank you Jesus that because of that, I too can choose a better way. I too can refuse to allow my flesh to grow offended and bitter. I too can choose to pour out grace on others, all because you pour out on me a grace undeserving.
Do you need freedom from walking a life of offense? There is a better way. And His Name is Jesus.