Do not say, “I’ll pay you back for this wrong!” Wait for the LORD, and he will avenge you. – Proverbs 20:22
In the previous devotion (19 DEC 2011), we read that it is to one’s honor to overlook an offense. The easiest action to seek revenge over is being offended by someone. People tend to fly off the handle and say things they regret when angered over an offense. If a person were to exact revenge over an offense, one has short-changed oneself. How? The revenge and satisfaction that comes from doing so may seem sweet at the moment or even a short while later. However, letting the LORD exact revenge for wrong done to His child brings surety of just recompense for the crime and a full reward for the offended.
Have you been offended lately or wronged by someone else? Did you take matters into your own hands and get that person back for what was done to you? If so, then you got the full reward you sought – taste of revenge and satisfaction of retaliation. How godly was that? You had the chance to forgive a person of the wrong done to you and extend grace and mercy and compassion as God does for you!
If you had let God take care of the situation, then you would have experienced a greater blessing for your obedience to God by “loving your neighbor as yourself” and possibly even planted the Seed, the Word of God, through your generosity and helped bring a soul into the kingdom! God is a loving Father, but He is a just One as well. If His children are wronged, He will take care of them and punish the offender. But, if the child goes and seeks revenge, then that person has limited God’s interaction and will reap the reward of a much lesser value. That person may have even sinned in the process and need God’s forgiveness and the person, whom they offended in return.
God told Moses long before Solomon came into being, “…I will take vengeance on my adversaries and repay those who hate me.” Paul reworded this verse and said that God says, “Vengeance is mine. I will repay.” To get something done, we need to remember God’s message to Zechariah, “Not by might, not by power, but by my Spirit.” Are you going to fight your battles, or will you stand still and “see the salvation of the LORD”? Don’t get people back. Let God deal with them. You love them like God commands us to!
Father, I could have so easily gotten revenge upon someone for the wrong done to me. I may have even muttered under my breath and thought of getting that person back! However, I repent of my thoughts and things said. Forgive me for these awful things. I will not do what I purposed to do, but instead, I will let you deal with that person’s heart through Your Holy Spirit. It is not by my might or power but only through You, Holy Spirit, that real reconciliation can be found. Bind the offender and offended in this case together with love and forgiveness. I will obey You, Dad, and love that person. In Jesus’ name, Amen.