I LIKE SCARLET O’HARA’S ATTITUDE, “I’ll think about it tomorrow. After all, tomorrow is another day.” Just sweep this thing under the rug until tomorrow, that’s when you’ll deal with it, a later date. That dust you’ve swept under the rug won’t cause any problems. Forget that you’ve made a huge mess of things, forget that you’ve caused a ton of division and strife with your selfish desires, forget that you’ve hurt feelings and destroyed lives; forget all those things. Or not.
Maybe there’s a better way? How about you swallow your pride and in humility, bow down and ask for forgiveness? For me, if your a sweeper, we are not going to be friends. I don’t deal well with people who don’t want to address what happened or their actions, but would rather pretend like nothing happened and say, “let’s just be friends”. We can be friends, but we are going to discuss what happened and you are going to own your actions.
“But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6
I’m reminded of a story in the Bible about a man named Zacchaeus . Zacchaeus was a tax collector and they were well known for taking a little more than they were supposed to. They were hated by the people for their extortion. When he met Jesus, he changed and not only had a heart of repentance but a heart to restore and make things right.
“Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold.” Luke 19:8
I remember after I was born again, I went around trying to make amends with people I had hurt. I humbled myself before others. Some received my apology and some did not and some were wondering why I was apologizing. I had been changed. I couldn’t let what I had done to others be a hindrance. I not only forgave those who had hurt me, I asked for forgiveness from those I had hurt.
Guess what? You are still required to do these things. But the longer you let division and bitterness boil, the harder the heart gets. Sweeping it away and pretending it never happened is just stuffing it down deep. Boiling water will eventually evaporate. God is the great I AM, meaning He is in the present, a right now and today God. He expects His followers to deal with things as quickly as possible. God knows us better than we know ourselves and letting something sit and not be dealt with produces bitterness in one or both of the parties.
“Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.” Hebrews 3:12-13
For me, I don’t want any bitterness; but I also do not want to produce bitterness in another. I have to answer to God for my actions. Humble yourself today so tomorrow will be peaceful. Don’t even let the sun go down while you’re still angry. Don’t allow bitterness to defile you or anyone else. Live in humility, I don’t care whose fault it is. Does it really matter? If you always have to be right and be “heard”, you might just be operating in pride. Seek forgiveness and reconciliation and in the process of seeking these things, you will find peace.
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