Before you answer this question, allow me to clarify what it doesn’t mean. This question is NOT asking whether you’re good at a particular task or thing. It’s NOT asking if you esteem yourself in an overly flattering light. And it’s NOT asking about your naughty or nice factor.
So, now that you know what it’s not asking, allow me to convey what it is asking: are you too good to suffer?
Yes, I know. It made me cringe too. But I’ll never forget the moment Grace whispered this question into my heart.
I was venting to the Holy One about a painful encounter with someone He asked me to befriend. This person hurt me–deeply. I was cast aside and berated because of my faith; because I dared to speak words of life and to love as the Holy One required me too.
I was stunned, at first. But then I was angry! After asking them to clarify, it was confirmed that I was being belittled because of my relationship with God. Understand, I have prayed for this person. I even shared my food. Yes, y’all, my food!
I was hoppin’ mad!! I almost dialed up Ms. Thang so she could do her worst. Within seconds, I entertained rage, wrath, pain, and embarrassment. I’d never been attacked by a person simply because I was trying to love them. I felt insanely stupid. So, I started plotting my revenge. Yes, I know vengeance is HIS but I decided that there were things I could do to “help” Him out in this area.
I was yelling and crying out to the Lord on that drive home. I was “madder than a wet hen” as my sister would say. And I don’t know how long I ranted but when I finally shut up Grace asked: So, you’re too good to suffer for the sake of the Kingdom? You’re too good to be offended by someone who’s lost and doesn’t know any better? Are you too good to take one, in the chest, for the sake of the One who gave His life for yours? Are you too good to endure hardship, false accusations and pain, for a little while, so that MY will could be done on the earth? Are you too good?
Immediately I was filled with remorse and sorrow. Had I indeed thought myself too good to bear the same burdens as Christ did for the sake of those who didn’t know any better? Had I become so enamored with my own feelings and perspectives, that I forgot what matters the most: HIS love for the lost? HIS heart cry for their salvation?
The way of the cross is not easy. It hurts, cuts and sometimes it makes us bleed. But know this, love casts out fear and covers a multitude of sins. Where sin does abound, love and grace will abound that much more.
So, I released them to the Lord and while I was crying out in worship, HE carved a word of life into the fabric of my being and beckoned me to share it with the person and present it along with a gift. And when I did, the power that the offense held in my heart was broken…immediately. I had chosen to repay life when I was given death.
Want to be free from offense, hurt and pain? Release. Forgive. Then love.
Thanks for visiting,