MUSIC TO READ BY: “I Exalt Thee!” by Israel Houghton
HAVE I EVER BEEN OFFENDED?
Unfortunately, yes. As much as I know better…it happened to me and I didn’t see it coming.
“Love is always patient and kind; it is never jealous, love is never boastful or conceited; it is never rude or selfish; it does not take offense, and is not resentful. Love takes no pleasure in other people’s sins but delights in the truth; it is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, and to endure whatever comes. Love does not come to an end.” 1 Corinthians 13: 4
NO MATTER HOW YOU LOOK AT IT; BEING OFFENDED IS BEING OUT OF LOVE.
I once had a dear church friend get mad at me. I was shocked. I immediately apologized and begged for forgiveness. My mistake was that I had mentioned to them in a nice way that they had not kept their word on several occasions. I should never have said that because they weren’t my children and I didn’t know them that well. I thought I did. But, I spilled it out without praying and I suppose I said it as a means of offense trying to control them or to make the person feel guilty. It was sporadic, it was wrong and it wasn’t love. I know better. I suffered a lot of pain as a result. I did a lot of praying. I wouldn’t leave my church; but I changed my seat for a long time. It was awful. Why did I help the devil? Why didn’t I realize that I was on a slippery slope? I just wasn’t there yet.
I wish I could say that only the “new” believers get offended; but that’s not true. Everyday, I meet someone who leaves a church they’ve been at for 20 years to go to another church. When I ask them why they are leaving; I’ve heard all kinds of excuses. Somebody said something. Somebody did something. I have met people who had compelling stories for leaving, but each person must ask themselves are they leaving for the right reason.
WEBSTER’S 1828 DICTIONARY SAYS:
Offense is when you feel like you’ve been injured or slighted. Some people get offended by something said to them and others may get offended by something that has not been said. Perhaps, it’s a look, or body language, or whispering or a rumor. Sometimes the root of it is miscommunication, jealousy, pride and the list goes on. My reaction injured another person and caused them to be offended and it could have went on and on except; we got our bearings. I work daily not to be touchy or sensitive and I’m winning.
My friend and I got back together; but unfortunately she moved away. I use that instance as a reminder of what I should never let happen. I use the Word of God as my compass.
Don’t help the devil outwardly or inwardly. Before I utter anything to anyone…I stop and ask myself: “Am I helping the devil? Can this be misconstrued?” If I get a check in my spirit…I keep moving.
You are in control! Yes you are…but you don’t “feel” like you are. The devil knows a sure way to get you in a place where everything stops working for you. Don’t Help The Devil! Don’t Do It!