Dealing with Difficult People – 7/23/17
Romans 12:18– Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.
Never Retaliate / Pray for Them
2 Samuel 16– Shimei Curses David, David doesn’t retaliate
2 Samuel 19 (Request for Justice) & 1 Kings 2 (Justice Delivered)
Pray for Yourself
Pray for a heart for all people
Colossians 3:12-34– Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Bless and Encourage Them
Hebrews 10:24– Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.
Ephesians 4:29– Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
Speak Truth in Love
Ephesians 4:15– Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.
Don’t Run Away Unless Necessary
Moses grew in Humility and Compassion as he led the Israelites
The Israelites grumbled because they had no water (Numbers 11:4-6)
The Israelites wished they died in Egypt (Numbers 20:2-3)
The Israelites wanted to choose another leader (Numbers 14:2-4)
Moses prayed for healing for Miriam from leprosy (Numbers 12:13)
Moses prayed for the Israelites (Numbers 14:19)
Moses fasted 40 days and nights because of golden calf worship (Deuteronomy 9:13-18)
A tortoise stands up to allow lizards and birds to get the insects that are in the hard-to-reach areas. One would think that a tortoise would not want to surround himself with lizards and birds, that they are very different from the slow-paced life of the tortoise. While this action of the tortoise benefits the tortoise, who likely gets irritated and annoyed by the insects, it also benefits the lizards and birds, who get a nice meal. What a great way for these creatures to live together in harmony!
In life, we are supposed to live in harmony with each other too. This can seem like a hard task as we sometimes do not understand certain people or enjoy their company. We question why someone comes along our path. We see some people near us as a nuisance. There are people we do not see as helpful. Some people are draining. Let’s be honest. It’s true. You will not like everyone. You will not get along with everyone. You may not want to lift yourself up for a lizard to help you out, because you cannot get past the annoyance of the lizard.
When you face these challenges, understand that the other person is created in the image of God. Just like you, the person is a broken image-bearer. It may be for your good that you have encountered the person. Remember, God uses all things to accomplish His great purpose. God is continuing to grow you into who you were meant to be in life. Today, choose to rise up like the tortoise and elevate those around you. As you look out for the best interest of others, as you invest in others and do whatever you can do to speak life to them, God will use what you pour out for His glory and He will continue to mold you into His image and teach you how to love others as He loves.
“Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.” – Romans 12:16 [ESV]
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” – Genesis 1:27 [ESV]
“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” – Romans 8:28 [NASB]
“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” – Philippians 2:4 [ESV]
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” – John 15:12 [NIV]