One problem in talking about faith is actually using it. Don’t go to God and discuss faith issues with him unless you are willing to put YOUR faith on the line. I know what I am talking about because I speak from experience.
The last week, was a week of tests for me. I was involved in several business related issues that didn’t go as I had expected them to go. In fact, they went south. I might add, they went south in a hurry. I experienced being “thrown under a bus” by someone I had trusted. This was a good old fashion sneak up behind them and stick them in the back when they aren’t looking kind of thing. My beloved happened to be with me on the way to dinner when I got the unexpected back stabbing.
I would love to tell you I stopped the car, jumped outside and threw my arms in the air yelling “praise God for this opportunity to suffer for you Lord.” I would love to tell you that, but then I would be adding lying to the whole sordid mess. What did I do? I swore. Loudly I might add. My beloved didn’t say anything but I knew she was concerned. As we ate dinner, I thought about what had just happened. Normally, I would sulk and pout and whine about it. I didn’t do that this time. Well at least I didn’t do it as long as I normally do.
I kept quiet and when I got home I asked the Lord what to do? The distinct impression I got was to do nothing. Don’t dig into it until the morning. My beloved asked me a question after we watched Gibbs, Kate, Ducky, Abbey and Denozo work through another sticky situation on NCIS. (Boy, wouldn’t it be nice to work through every situation in 45 minutes with time for several commercials as well thus stretching the problem out to an hour with a neat and tidy bow on it at the end.) I told her I didn’t want to deal with it until tomorrow.
When the morning came I sat down refreshed and ready to do digital combat with the former friend turned villain that so treacherously stuck me in the back when I wasn’t looking. As I started, I began blasting out an e-mail worthy of John Steinbeck, John Ludlum or Margaret Mitchell. It was awesome. When I was ¾ of the way through it, I asked the Lord to comment, and He did. I began to see scripture and how it tied to this situation. I saw 1st Corinthians 13 in a new light. I saw how the Lord wanted me to respond. Here are the distinct impressions I got:
- First of all don’t return evil for evil. Galatians tells us that.
- Love doesn’t keep track of wrongs suffered. 1st Corinthians tells us that.
- Jesus, when confronted with wrong doing, kept his mouth shut not responding to his opponents.
- Jesus relied upon God to respond for him. He didn’t respond on his own.
Well with this in mind, I asked the Lord to help me write a professional response that dealt with the issues raised without attacking or trashing the person involved. It took 4 hours, but was worth the struggle. The final document accomplished the goal of alerting everyone to the problem at hand, but did not respond in kind to the person involved.
This faith thing is tough. I’m determined to get it right though. In the process I sense the Lord making progress in my life. That’s a good thing.
Lord: Help me to respond to situations like this one consistently in a way that honors you and helps me to grow in Christ.