Recently when I felt badly rejected by those I love, I realized that four individuals seem to come against me on a regular basis. There are different reasons for this—many centered on issues they have failed to deal with or bring before the Lord.
As I thought of them coming against me, these “con” words came to mind:
Contrariness: the quality of being someone who intentionally wants to disagree with and annoy other people.
Condescension: behaving in a way which shows you consider yourself to be better or more intelligent than other people.
Contempt: a strong feeling of lack of respect for someone or something.
Condemnation: express complete disapproval of, typically in public
Until that moment, I had not realized how often these actions were part of how these four treated me.
At first I thought How dare they? and What in the world am I going to do about this? even though this had been going on for years.
Once I got over my indignation, another thought occurred to me. In these four relationships I had acted out these four “con” words toward these people at one time or another. With two of them, it was because they had treated me that way first, and I was retaliating. The other two I hated to admit that at times I was the initiator of these behaviors because this was my response to their rebellion against the Lord.
Another “con” on my part was that I too often tried to control these four people in an effort to get them to do or think right, and the four above actions were connected to that controlling behavior.
The bottom line is the Lord impressed on me that whether they started it or not, I was not to return evil for evil–contrariness for contrariness, condescension for condescension, contempt for contempt, condemnation for condemnation.
Here is how the Bible says it: “Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.” Romans 12:17 NIV
“Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.” 1 Peter 3:9
Here is what the Lord spoke to my heart after praying about the matter: LET ME EMPOWER YOU TO STOP RETURNING EVIL FOR EVIL. THERE IS MUCH EVIL COMING YOUR WAY BECAUSE THEY DO NOT KNOW HOW TO CALL ON ME TO DEAL WITH HURT, AND HURT PEOPLE HURT PEOPLE. LET ME EMPOWER YOU TO SAY NOTHING. EACH OF THESE IS INCAPABLE OF LISTENING. POUR OUT YOUR HEART TO ME. I AM LISTENING. CRY OUT TO ME. CRY YOUR TEARS BEFORE ME. DO NOT TURN TO THE THINGS OF THIS WORLD TO DEAL WITH PAIN, ANGER, OR DEPRESSION. FOOD WILL NOT HELP. BUYING THINGS WILL NOT HELP. EXERCISE PROFITS ONLY A LITTLE, BUT WILL NOT HELP TO HEAL THE DEEP HURTS OF YOUR SOUL. I WILL HELP YOU. I WILL HELP YOU. I WILL HELP YOU. I WILL STRENGTHEN YOU. I WILL UPHOLD YOU WITH THE RIGHT HAND OF MY RIGHTEOUSNESS. REJECT LIES FROM THESE FOUR FOES. RECEIVE MY TRUTH. RECEIVE MY PEACE. RECEIVE MY JOY.
This evening one of these four spoke against me in a condescending manner. Instead of retaliating, I was able to be silent and call out to the Lord and pray for this one that her hurts would be healed.
Then I thought of something I heard in a song on the radio that I need to do consistently in regard to these relationships rather than coming against those who come against me: “I will cast my cares on You.” I care about these people, and I’m hurt deeply when at moments it seems they don’t care about me. I want to fix things between us and between them and the Lord, but I can’t. It’s essential to cry out to the One who cares deeply for all of us and is able to heal me and them.
“Cast My Cares” by Finding Favour