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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Taking Him Seriously

An Eye for an Eye

38"You have heard that it was said, 'Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.'[g] 39But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.
This goes so against my grain. It seems like this method will enable lazy people. It could cause people to treat you like a doormat, really USE you. I don't like to feel USED. You know? What the heck was Jesus talking about? Maybe He didn't mean it literally. Maybe He didn't really mean it at all. Maybe He didn't know so-and-so (fill in the blank here) who would take folks for everything they've got.  And then, I got to thinking (under the direction of the HOLY SPIRIT, I'll betcha).
Imagine what must go through someone's mind when, upon scheming and forcing you to give them your time, money, or possesions, you happily give them even more than they tried to force from you.
You know who I'm talking about. We all have a family member or friend who manipulates to get more. That's all they think about- how to get you to pay for their meal, or spend more time with them, or give them the CD you just bought. Biblical example: Jacob, the heal grasper. I am talking about heal-graspers here.
Most people either flat out refuse them or grudgingly allow the person to pry it from their death-grip.
I personally fall into the second category- I will give people what they want, but I will make them ask for it straight. I want them to know that I know that they are manipulating me to ge their own way.
What would go on inside their head if someone were to say, "Yes, you can borrow (ie. take with no intention of returning) that CD. Oh, and here, this is the one they just came out with this year. It's my favorite." Or, "Oh, you don't have any cash on you? Do you need a $20.00 just in case you need something before you get paid?" Or, "You need some help with your floors? Can I do your dishes while I'm here?"
If you willingly give more than someone tries to take from you two things happen.

Number 1: They are no longer able to manipulate you. You are GIVING to them, instead of them TAKING from you. I know I feel a lot better about GIVING to people than I do about them TAKING from me.
I feel better.
Number 2: (This one is more important, I think.) Instead of feeling like the low-down dirty scoundrel of a schemer that they are, they feel blessed, ministered to, fulfilled. They feel loved.
They feel better.
Instead of breeding contempt on my part and guilt on theirs, there is generosity and love. Wow. Contempt and guilt versus generosity and love. Hmmm. Maybe Jesus did mean it literally.


michele said...

You're helping to change someone's character for the better when you live like this. You're helping them get one (or more) steps closer to God.

Pamela said...


and my word is 'defying'. as in this theology is defying the world.

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About Me
I love Jesus, my hubby, my 6 kiddos, my farm, good books and good food.