Do you have any challenging people in your life? I sure do. Challenging people are everywhere. You find them on the phone talking to the phone company over a messed up bill. It may be the rude cashier at the grocery store. It could be dorm mates if you are in college. It could be peers at your school or work. They make us want to scream. They frustrate us. They hurt our feelings. They torment us.
So what can we do about it? How can we make things better? Some people talk about revenge. They want to payback what has been done to them. They want to see that tormentor “get what is coming to them”.Revenge is an ugly thing that never has an ending. Weather it be a tit for tat. You get me, I get you back, then you get me again, it keeps going back and forth until someone gives. No one wins at that game. Or, you end up bitter and angry. This will affect every relationship you have in a negative way until you are willing to deal with it. It becomes a root of hate.
What if I said there was a better way to “get back at them”.That way is by loving them.I know it sounds crazy. I bet you are saying to your self,but “you don’t know what they said(did) to(about) me.” I say that it doesn’t really matter. Jesus say’s:
Luke 6:32-36-“If you Love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ lend to ‘sinners,’ expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
I have been through this personally. I had a tormentor that daily made my life miserable. I worked with her and it was so bad that I would have rather been in a car accident rather than go to work. I wanted so bad for things to change,but it was out of my control. when I brought the problem to the management they always took her side. I felt angry and frustrated. I began to live out my faith .Ok, I came across this verse:
Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” [fn] says the Lord. On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” [fn] Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.Romans12:19-21
I will have to admit I was already delighting in evil just by reading it and looking what was in my heart. Heaping coals on her head sounded really good to me.In spite of all of that I began to pray for her daily. I would pray good things for her. At first it was hard. It seemed to be fake. After a while my heart towards her began to soften. Then God began to let me see her as a real hurting person. I actually had compassion for her. That felt much better then anger and frustration( even if she was still tormenting me).
Today, She is a Child of God. A true believer in Christ. That is the best revenge I could have ever gotten.No longer is she a tormentor but my sister in Christ. I learned a lot through all of this. More than I have time to write about today.
So, the next time I come across a challenging person, I know how to love them in spite of how I feel on the inside.I know they are in my life for a reason.I know If I removed them from my life God would give me someone just like them again so He could workout in me who I am supposed to be. Why would he do that? Because He loves me too much not to help me grow up. The next time you are facing Challenging people, pray for them. Give room for God to work out your faith. Allow God to do the work of changing them and the situation. Remember that you are his kid, and He loves you too much to not help you grow.