Payback

Reading for Today: Proverb Chapter 20

Gold Nugget
Verse 22: Do not say, "I will recompense evil"; Wait for the Lord, and He will save you. 

Commentary
Instinctively we want to see people get what they have coming. When someone has hurt us specifically, we take special interest in seeing them punished. It’s then we really want to see them suffer. After all, they deserve it. This may be our nature, but our nature would have us engage in all sorts of primitive and selfish ways that are inappropriate. When someone has done us wrong, we fear they may get away with it. It is true that they shouldn’t be able to hurt people without suffering consequences, but we are neither equipped nor just enough to teach them a lesson. God makes it clear that He is more than capable of engaging with His creation in order to give them opportunity to choose between love and hate. To keep us out of the mix, He tells us, “…vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord” (Romans 12:19). It takes trust for us to believe that God sees our afflictions as well as sees our afflictors. Too often we would rather take matters into our own hands lest God enact His vengeance for us without letting us witness it. However, He has called us to a greater state of mind and condition of heart than to poison it with the desire to see anyone suffer. Even if they deserve it, we should never take pleasure in seeing someone suffer. “Rejoice not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thine heart be glad when he stumbleth: Lest the LORD see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him” (Proverbs 24:17-18). We must not take pleasure in sin or witnessing people suffering from their sin. It should bring compassion to our heart. If not, God will turn His wrath from them because of you. We can live a more peaceable life not having to worry about paying people back. Instead, we should do as today’s “gold nugget” says, “Do not say, "I will recompense evil"; Wait for the Lord, and He will save you.

Prayer
Lord, help me to be more spiritually minded than to feel a need to retaliate at every offense. You provide every need that I have, even justice. I will not be vengeful, but will trust you to defend me when I need it. Amen


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