Whether real or imagined, revenge only breeds more pain.
The Single Most Destructive Attitude We Can Have – Part 2 – Resenting People
It’s true – “To err is human,” and to be wounded by humans is equally unavoidable. I’ve never met a cancer patient who hasn’t endured a thoughtless comment, gross incompetence, or the neglect of friend or family. It’s easy to develop resentment, especially when you’ve never been more reliant on others’ support. So how do you handle the emotional scars of your battle?
Consider Job’s situation. I wonder which aspect of his living nightmare was most painful. Was it losing all ten of his children, his livestock and his servants in a single day? Was it the tormenting boils that covered his skin from head to toe? Or was it the counsel of “friends,” who insisted the calamities were God’s payback for his sin?
Interestingly, before God restores Job’s health, family and fortunes, He asks him to pray for the well-being of his friends, releasing them from the scars they inflicted. After all, the Lord did not want Job’s nightmare to continue. Whether real or imagined, revenge only breeds more pain. So don’t release the Kraken… on yourself! As the Lord clearly warns:
Be angry, and yet do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not give the devil an opportunity. – Ephesians 4:26
See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. – Hebrews 12:15
So how do we get free of resentment? Keep in mind the second half of the old adage, “To err is human, to forgive divine.” As with all matters of righteousness, we are powerless to produce forgiveness. Yet at our invitation, the Lord can extend His grace in us and through us toward others. So turn to Him for the power to forgive.
Next time we’ll discuss the resentments that can spring up while taking care of others. For more on how to forgive – check out my Bible study on Forgiveness.
Father, grant us the grace to forgive others, just as You have forgiven us in Christ.
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All materials in this blog copyright (c) Joe Fornear. Scripture quotations from the NASB.