The good, the bad and the harvest of blessing…

Feelings.  We women have a plethora of feelings.  Our feelings can drive us in all sorts of crazy directions.  Sometimes when we are dealing with hurt, it is incredibly hard to rein those feelings in and look for truth at the heart of a situation.

Every second of every day, evil is at work.  Not a minute passes by that evil is not attempting to trip us up or get us tangled in the mess that feelings can bring.  When we are hurting, human nature screams for revenge.  We want payback.  We want to see someone get what is coming to them.  Those feelings can drive us to do evil things.  That is where truth steps in and we let go of feelings.

Romans 12:21 says that we are “not to be overcome by evil but to overcome evil with good.”  Not particularly the thing in which we want to do when we are hurting.  It is much easier to lash out.  It feels good to get those feelings out.  In that moment anyway.  Later when conviction sets in, we realize what we have said or done to hurt another.  Suddenly we are feeling worse.  Suddenly our troubles have grown.  We have created quite the mess.

There is a reason why we are told to overcome evil with good.  There is a reason why we are told in Ephesians to be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. (4:32)  When we walk a life professing to follow Christ, we are to promote peace, kindness, love and forgiveness.  When someone has wronged us, we are truly to turn the other cheek.  We are to follow the example Christ set for us.  If we want forgiveness from God then we must offer forgiveness to others. Personally, it frustrates me.  It is hard when my family is constantly being hurt. Personally, I am tired of being bullied.  I am tired of people who use their power to abuse others.  However, I follow an awesome God.  He sent His Son to give up His life for me and so I choose to be a reflection of Christ.  I choose to forgive.  Because of these choices, I am reaping the benefits of following Him in obedience.

So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.

Galatians 6:9-10

By choosing to do good, God blesses.  I have never known that to be truer than I do right now.  Not too long ago, yet again, evil tried to harm my family.  In someone’s attempt to cause dissension and hurt through manipulation and drama, I witnessed God do something great.  What someone meant for bad, God turned it around and used it for good.  My family became closer.  My children grew closer to their step-dad.  An event transpired that brought truth to light for us all and a great revelation occurred. 

Over a year ago, I received an email from a woman who reminded me that true character reveals itself in time.  For a year, I have patiently waited for my children to discover truth.  It is happening. It is truly a remarkable thing when you can experience God working.  To clearly see good overcome something that was meant to hurt and destroy is exciting. 

Sometimes we cannot stop the evil.  Sometimes the story, the good and bad parts have to play out.  No matter how ugly it can get I am learning that it is best to sit back and give God the control.  Allowing the story to unfold the way in which He has it written allows the good to radiate through leaving you to recognize that it is clearly Him doing the great and good work in your life.  I am so thankful for the good and the bad.  It is hard to sit back and be hurt but letting go of the feelings and focusing on what I know to be true allows God the room He needs to do great things in my story.

Today as I write this out and think through the events that have transpired,  I am so incredibly thankful for my husband. He sets an example for my children.  My husband is not perfect and he has made bad choices in his life.  However, I know the kind of man that he is…he does not blame others for his mistakes.  He takes ownership and seeks forgiveness.  He stays silent when others would try to cause him harm.  He trusts God to handle the issues and turns the other cheek.  He does not speak ill of others.  Especially in front of my children.  He is amazing that way and my children recognize that in him.  It is evident what a person who walks with Christ should look like and they are able to compare others accordingly in order to seek out truth.  What someone did in order to cause harm in my family, God turned it around and used it as a time to draw my family closer to together.  God is faithful in ALL things.  He is definitely my Protector.  He promises to protect His children and when we allow Him that position, He is faithful to fulfill His promises.  I am learning that you do not mess with His kids!

Verdict revealed

So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.

Romans 8:1-2

I’m sitting in a courtroom at a table near the judge’s bench.

Someone says ‘All rise’ and everyone stands. Suddenly there is lightning and thunder, smoke and fire as the Judge enters the room. The Judge is the most terrifying, frightening, glorious being you have ever seen. Winged beings fly around him, covering their faces while crying, “Holy! Holy! Holy!” Everyone in the court room falls to the floor in abject fear. Then the Judge sits down, slams his gavel on his desk, and says, “Let the proceedings begin.”

Now the prosecutor stands. My blood runs cold as I see that the prosecutor is none other than the ancient Serpent himself. He is trembling and I see the fear in the yellow slits of his eyes as he nervously inches forward toward the Judge’s bench and summons up the courage to speak.

“Your Honor, you are the righteoussss Judge,” he hisses. ”All justice is in your hands. And I – I demand justice this morning. You see, the defendant” – and he turns slowly and looks right at…ME, with his terrible eyes. And he slowly points a long, gnarled finger at me – “The defendant is guilty of breaking your holy law and has violated divine justice. He has rebelled against you, ignored you and spit in your face. He has failed to thank you for all your blessings, and he has worshipped false gods. These crimes must be punished! Give the defendant to me – let me take him where he deserves to go.”

There is silence in courtroom. Every eye is on the Judge. And my heart is sinking because every accusation of the prosecutor is true.

Suddenly the silence is broken and I hear someone say loudly, “I OBJECT Your Honor!” Every eye turns to see the defense attorney standing beside me. How had I not seen him before?

“I have paid for the defendant’s crimes – every one. Remember, I took his place and his punishment and satisfied your justice on the cross.”

“Objection sustained!” says the Judge.

“But Your Honor,” snarls the prosecutor, “Even last week the defendant had over a hundred ssssselfish thoughts in his mind. The defendant doubted your goodness and hated someone in his heart. You said that’s the same as murder. He must be punished!”

“Objection Your Honor! Again, I paid for those sins as well.”

“Objection sustained!”

“But Your Honor…” I think I detect a note of desperation in the prosecutor’s voice. ”Not only has the defendant committed willful crimes, but he has failed to love you with all his heart, soul, mind and strength from the day he was born. That’s the great commandment. And he fails to love his neighbor as himself, the second greatest commandment, every day.”

“Objection! Your Honor I not only paid for all the sins he actively committed, but I paid for all he failed to do as well. I paid for all his failures with his children. All the times he’s failed to love his wife. I paid for every failure. And you have decreed that once sin is paid for it does not need to be paid for a second time.”

“Objection sustained!” Shouts the judge slamming his gavel down on his desk.

“But Your Honor…”

“Sit down Mr. Prosecutor. I’ve heard quite enough from you. There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. I declare this man to be not guilty in my sight. And I declare him to be righteous in Christ. Court dismissed!”

“But Your Honor…”

“Michael! Please escort the prosecutor out of the court room.”