This morning in my quiet time with Jesus, He blessed me oh so gracefully with an what one of my favorite Sunday School teachers quite appropriately called an "oucher". I was reading in Psalms 19 then somehow (through cross referencing, which I do in frequent fast mode) ended up in Romans chapter 12. Usually you hear the beginning of the chapter preached on and expounded upon, but verses 9-21 is AMAZING! It's simple yet extremely profound in the principles it lays down for how a young lady striving to serve God with all her heart (and Christians in general!) should conduct herself!
The verse though that slapped me in the face was verse 14.
"Bless them which persecute you; bless, and curse not."
...yeah. OUCH! Paul is telling the early church and us as Christian young ladies how to respond when other people (mean girls, rude guys, family members, even sometimes friends) make fun of us, tease us, and in short, just say mean things to us-- rude things, hurtful things.
He tells us that we are to respond to their hurtful/rude comments, their "persecution", not by lashing out or with harsh and hurtful words of our own, but with blessing! We are supposed to bless them! Yeah. And the hard part about this verse is that it isn't a suggestion. It doesn't say "If I want to" or "when I feel like it" or "once in a while"... no no no no. It is a clear cut imperative statement that says "bless them".
Jesus Himself told His followers and disciples this in Matthew 5 in the 'sermon on the mount'. In Matthew 5:44 Jesus tells us to "...bless them that curse you..."
This is such a hard concept (especially for me as I am the oldest of 6!! children) for us to grasp, and even harder for us to actually carry out. As I once heard an evangelist say, "this preaches easy, but lives tough!"
oh and boy is he NOT KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
but my decision/battle plan for the day is this: when any one (and omisoul I really mean anyone...this is gonna be so hard! lol) says anything even hurtful or mean to me today (accidentally and especially purposefully) I am going to respond (Lord willing and with His help--b/c He's gonna be the One that works this out in me!) by "blessing them"-- which I'm gonna do by saying something kind to them. Responding pleasantly. Even if it's as dorky as "oh i like your bracelet" after I get yelled at for sitting in the wrong seat on the way home from vacation today.
I hope you'll make this decision with me. Just try it out for a day! (our walk with our Lord is a step-by-step daily thing-- which is good, even though we don't always like it-- if He told me everything I think I need to know about His will for my life for even the next 6 weeks I'd probably be scared to death! lol) Try it, dear sisters! and let me know how God works in your life and I will definitely do the same!
Love in Christ