Daily Devotional: Psalms 7:6-9
6 Arise, O LORD, in your anger; rise up against the rage of my enemies. Awake, my God; decree justice. 7 Let the assembled peoples gather around you. Rule over them from on high; 8 let the LORD judge the peoples. Judge me, O LORD, according to my righteousness, according to my integrity, O Most High. 9 O righteous God, who searches minds and hearts, bring to an end the violence of the wicked and make the righteous secure.
17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 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," says the Lord. 20 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." 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
As a preacher, my dad was called on to counsel with couples who were having marital problems. On one such occasion, he asked the lady if she had tried “heaping coals of fire” on the head of her husband. She said “no”, but she had hit him over the head with a skillet. This is the “normal” way to react when we feel we have been mistreated – we retaliate in like manner to how we have been done. This is the opposite of the Christ-like spirit we are to have.
While eating in a restaurant with my dad we received really bad service. When we got ready to leave, he left an unusually large tip. When I questioned him about it, he said that anytime he got bad service in a place to which he planned to return, he left a big tip so they would treat him better next time.
It is not easy for us to be nice and kind to those who are trying to hurt us or who are hateful to us. But Jesus said we are to turn the other cheek and go the extra mile. He said we are to never repay evil with evil. We are to do all we can to treat the person nicely and then leave it up to God to get even. Can you imagine how our world would change overnight if we all practiced this?!
Heavenly Father, give me strength to resist taking my own revenge. Give me faith to trust you to know how, to know what and to know when it needs to be done and then let you do it your way. Help me be kind, compassionate, tender-hearted, loving and forgiving to all I come in contact with – beginning today. Thank you for loving me and forgiving me when I do not deserve it. I ask a special prayer this morning for those who are sick and hurting and also for those who are taking care of them on a daily basis. Give them patience. I pray in the name of Jesus.