Bible Reading: Romans 12:17-21 Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Romans 12:17
EVER HAD ANY of the following-or something like them-happen to you? Check either yes or no for each statement:
_____ _____ A careless brother or sister destroys something of yours.
_____ _____ A “friend” spreads a nasty rumor about you.
_____ _____ Somebody gets perturbed with you and pushes you around.
_____ _____ You are not invited to the biggest party of the year.
_____ _____ A sibling treats you like you’re a nuisance.
Okay-somewhere, sometime, somehow you’ve probably been wronged. Check any of the following you wanted to do in response-or actually did.
_____ _____ Do unto him what he did unto you–only twice as bad.
_____ _____ Pound his head in.
_____ _____ Send her a note with “Dear Ex-Friend” as its opening line.
_____ _____ Hack into the school computer and change all his grades.
Perhaps your brain seems to have come equipped with a sinister little “payback chip.” Whenever you’re wronged, something inside you kicks into action and strongly prompts you to do unto others just as they have done unto you. Since we’re all tempted this way at times, how should we respond?
Once again your sacrificing Savior shows you the way to go. If anybody deserved to lash back at unfair treatment, it was God’s sinless Son. Yet, “He did not retaliate when he was insulted. When he suffered, he did not threaten to get even. He left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly” (1 Peter 2:23). Jesus’ Father knew the treatment his Son received was rotten beyond belief. And he knew exactly what kind of payback it required. God is your Father too, and he will justly avenge-in his own way and time-any wrongs done to you.
REFLECT: When you are wronged, what’s your usual reaction?
PRAY: Ask Jesus today to begin reprogramming that payback chip inside you to help you put down your weapons of retaliation and slowly back away.