One of the things that I constantly struggled with (and sometimes still do) is wanting to get people back for what they did to me. Sweet revenge.
So many times in the past I fell short. I didn’t listen to that small, incessant voice in my head telling me to stop before I started. But, how hard that voice is to acknowledge when you’ve got something stronger pulling at you. Something easier than doing the right thing.
It’s painted on every television show and hidden in every movie. It’s in music that you hear every. day. (Hello Taylor Swift!) There was even a series named revenge. How can we not get this screwed-up image of the word when it’s everywhere, and we’re told exactly how we should view it?
It’s almost weird if we don’t listen to the advice shoved down our throats, because “everyone else is,” right!? It’s just karma. We need to get back at others for what they did to us. We’d totally be screwing up the vibes if we didn’t. Oh and it feels good, we’ll be happy after we get them back.
Re-read that paragraph above and think about how many times you’ve heard those sentences. Maybe it was in passing, maybe your friends were having a conversation about it, or maybe you said those things.
I’ll be honest, I know I have. More than that, I’ve taken the initiative not to step backwards and forget what I said, rather to step forward and throw back the hate that was given to me.
Think about all the times when you got revenge on someone. Now, instead of carrying out that action, imagine what would’ve happened if you hadn’t done anything. I’m literally talking smiling sweetly in their face after they’ve just figuratively punched you in the gut. And then walking away, with your head held high.
It’s hard isn’t it? Really hard.
But…what if I told you the best revenge really was no revenge at all?But...what if I told you the best revenge really was no revenge at all? Click To Tweet
Would you laugh at that sentence? Would you put your hands up and walk away from your computer or phone? Would you start writing out a comment to disagree with me?
Maybe. And I wouldn’t blame you.
Everything in this world tells us that we need to hurt others the way they’ve hurt us. Being the bigger person is lame. We literally learn this from the time we’re old enough to think.Everything in this world tells us that we need to hurt others the way they've hurt us. Click To Tweet
Working with children throughout college, I’ve seen far too many of them who have a mentality that if someone physically or mentally hurts them, they need to do it back. And better. I won’t come right out and say who I think they get these ideas from, but I’m sure you can guess.
Is that the idea we want our children to have? Instead of spreading love, they should multiply the hate?
When someone treats us in a way that’s…well…less than desirable…let’s push back on society’s norms. It’s going to be harder, yes. However, you might find yourself in a few less fights. And a little happier, stronger and wiser for it.
We may be going against what society tells us to do, but is that necessarily wrong?
Let’s look at what God has to say about it:
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)
Wow. Okay, I love that passage. God is telling us not to get revenge on someone, rather to do what we were called to do: show love to others! Even in the hardest of circumstances, when all we want to do is yell, get mad or maybe hurt someone, God is telling us not to. He’s telling us there’s a better option out there, one that will be harder to choose but will save our soul.
If you’re ever in a situation where someone hurt you, which I’m sure you will be, take a second and think. Think about what Jesus would have done. Think about what He did do when he was being persecuted and sentenced to death? He let them have their words and ways with Him, because He knew there was something more important than this world; Heaven.