To build on what Matt Allen spoke about last week, on Blessings and Cursings, I wanted to talk about being wronged and how God wants us to handle it.
I remember a saying: "When you point a finger at someone, there is alway 3 fingers pointing back at you." This saying hit home for me about 5 years ago. To make a long story short, I was very upset with my family for an incident that happened which led to my dad asking me to leave the family business. I'm the youngest of 5 (1 brother and 3 sisters). My brother and brother-in-laws all work at the family business. In this situation no one was right in what they did. Was I immature? Yes. Were my brother-in-laws and brother immature? Yes. Someone needed to be the fall guy and it landed on me. For that I was very upset.
5 years later I'm able to understand this saying. I spent too much time being angry with my family, but what was wrong with the way that I was reacting? I wasn't acting in the way that God calls me to act: Forgiveness. You see, we were all allowing sin to enter our lives and control the way we responded to each other; from the time that things started deteriorating in the family business to me living with so much anger.
Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, Let me take the speck out of your eye, when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
We were all living in sin... allowing the planks in our eye to cloud our vision: the gifts that God had so graciously given to us to use for His glory. To this day I still wake up and the situation will play in my head leading me to become very angry. My wife does a great job at defusing me: "David, you need to go for a ride." A bike ride always helps! My wife is essentially telling me to go and remove the plank from my eye.
So, how could we have handled this situation better? Matthew 7 continues:
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will open for you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will open.
Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
God calls us to a relationship with Him. When situations present themselves and wrong us we need to:
First - Go to God and Ask for his understanding. Understand that when someone wrongs us, we are all sinful and living in a sinful world. Sin is our nature. We must battle this constantly to refuse sin and try to live a pure life-like Christ.
Second - Seek God for his guidance. Allow God to guide your as you begin navigating the situation. Let him control you thoughts, mouth, and actions.
Third - Knock. Once we Ask and Seek God we need to then Knock on the door so we can enter His way of life aka allow God to show you how we finally respond or react to those that have wronged you.
God wants us to Forgive or ask for Forgiveness. Don't just say or ask for it... allow God to help you understand it.
Finally, I want you to understand that I believe there are people who are being wronged in ways that need professional help. I strongly believe (being wronged slightly or badly) we all need to seek professional mental / clinical Christian counseling.
Don't be afraid to ask. I wasn't and I can admit that it was the best decision I made.
Call your local church and begin the process of sitting down and talking with someone. If you're church doesn't have a counseling department, than ask them for a reference to a qualified Christian counseling department at another church or nonprofit agency.
FYI: Things are getting better with my family. How? I'm finally able to understand that it was sin that was controlling that situation and in light of that horrible situation, I'm now 6 years in ministry. I can't imagine what my life would look like if I had stayed in the family business. My work reminds me everyday of the glories that God provides for us.
Don't allow sin to control your life. Ask, Seek, and Knock on God's door!
Thanks and God Bless!