Nothing Will Offend You...Nothing?
Do you ever feel like you’re an expert at being offended? (Maybe it’s the warm, fuzzy feeling being mad brings... right?)
I’ll never forget some years ago (actually approximately three to four years IN A ROW!) I prayed for one scripture for New Years; like a motto to live by for three hundred and sixty-five days. I wanted a reminder of some kind to help me intentionally and consistently target a specific area of much needed personal growth and learning. In other words, it’s easy NOT to grow!
In previous years, I’d focused on things like unconditional love, living in joy or my favorite, laughter doing good like a medicine...I love it! Even the years with an emphasis on loving the unlovable were much easier than the one we are about to talk about (hold on, this may hurt!). THIS life-changing scripture from the Bible dug deepest into my daily struggles, as well as pinpointing my inability at times to REALLY be honest with myself. It seemed so benign:
GREAT PEACE HAVE THEY
THAT LOVE THY LAW,
AND NOTHING SHALL OFFEND THEM.
My first thought after reading this scripture was “that is so sweet!”. Then the truth behind the scripture settled in my mind...Wait! Nothing as in NO THING? My next thought followed quickly “Okay.. we may have a problem here.” Have you noticed OFFENSES can really ruin your day or week? Actually, one major offense can ruin a lifetime!
Surprisingly, this verse connects our choice of believing and obeying God’s law with our ability to not be offended. Wow! So are we saying here that the real problem with us being mad all the time and battling hurt feelings, unforgiveness, and pouting (all the above included generally with being offended, unfortunately for us) is our insane choice of ignoring or NOT believing (therefore, NOT obeying!) God’s law?
This sounds more serious than I imagined.
God’s law basically says if we love and obey Him with all our hearts and love people as ourselves, He will guide, protect, and help us and our families to live fulfilling, purposeful, generally peaceful, joy-filled lives, even in the tough times. Do I really believe that? Do you? One of the most exciting journeys in life is BEING HONEST WITH YOURSELF….really honest!
Painful is undoubtedly more descriptive than exciting for this “thrilling Odyssey in Honesty!” For example, time after time this scripture has forced me to realize I was way too easily offended by my husband or children! This scripture exposed many things in my heart including immaturity in some areas, lack of faith, and weakness in controlling or refocusing my emotions.
The sad news? I’m still challenged by the temptation to be offended. The good news? I am addicted to living free from the drain of inner turmoil and unhappiness. I like the simple choice of focusing on trusting God to handle every situation and rejecting the poison of offense. (And I realize simple doesn’t always mean easy!) Give your family a gift today (and every day) - be a mom/dad or wife/husband who loves BIG and refuses even the SMALLEST offense!
P.S. Yes, I wrote a Best Buddies song about not being offended, “Great Peace.” It’s one of my favorites, it’s MY musical declaration!
If you would like to join my “Confessional Session” today (if it humbles you it’s not all bad, my mother in law says!) I would love to hear how you stay free of offense. Comment below! ❤️
Never Give Up!