1 Corinthians 6:7 – Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be defrauded?
Colossians 3:13 – Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a complaint against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
Proverbs 19:11 – A person’s wisdom yields patience; and it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense.
Lord Jesus, I find these words from you to be hard for me. When someone wrongs me, I want to get even. When someone defrauds me and steals from me, I want to get back, at least, what they took. When someone hurts me, I want to hurt them back. When someone annoys or offends me, I want to get my pound of flesh. These are hard words. I find it really hard to overlook the complaints I have against other people. I find it really hard to overlook an offense. This is as hard for me as your word to turn the other cheek. But Lord, this is how you want me to live, especially with my fellow believers. This is what you want me to do, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Help me to remember how great your forgiveness for me is. You should have blasted me off of this earth at the first whiff of rebellion from my heart. You should have blasted me off this earth at the first offense. But you put up with me and bear with me, even when my heart is stubborn and refuses to go your way. You are so gracious. You have forgiven all my sins. You have even forgotten my sins, even though there are not enough books on this earth to contain all the sins which I have committed. You are so good and so gracious to me. Fill my heart with the warmth of your love and grace of your forgiveness so that I might be like you to those who wrong me. Teach me to be like you, to put up with those who offend me and get under my skin. And, Lord, help me to not just put up with them. Help me to forgive them and pour out on the grace in place of grace, as you have poured out on me. Help me to turn the other cheek, to go above and beyond in my love for them that they might know your love in the love I show them. Help me do this, dear Lord. They need to know your love just as I need to know your love. Amen.