I don't ever want to be well-adjusted to injustice. I don't every want my heart to anticipate a negative response to others. I don't ever want to get too big for my britches.
But how do I prevent these?
I've always been a Pollyanna. I've cared too much, hurt too deeply, and cried too loud.
Recently, the pain has become overwhelming.
How do I prevent walls built around myself? Walls that cause me to become calloused to the injustice of our time? Or more personally my own hands building a wall to prevent me from seeing the injustice as nothing but normal. Or as has happened with me when I have shown injustice to others that are living out their lives in front of me: dulled to what is being done. Dulled to what I did.
These happen in our lives. They are sometimes things we hide, sometimes things we confess. The latter is always the best.
These injustices splatter nightly on the 5:00 news. When they do, I climb into my recliner, I curl up on a sofa. I force my mind to shut down, to protect, to wall up. I force myself to disconnect. Who can handle all the injustice that we hear?
The fraternities that video hate. The murders of children in schools. The rape, the abuse, the addiction. The drug addictions that flourish in our country.
But closing my eyes to them, building a wall around my heart, ignoring the problem is not where I can live as a follower of Jesus Christ. So, where do I go?
Mercy. What does mercy mean anyway?
Merriam-Webster defines it as "A compassion or forbearance shown especially to one that has done a wrong." I get pretty nitty gritty... to me it is kindness. Love kindness.
I have been wronged in my life. I have sought to find mercy for those that have wronged me. Sometimes I have been successful in this and sometimes I have not. Where did I find the ability to be kind? And was there a place I found the mercy available for me to give and just didn't give it? Where can I find it again?
I've been told humility isn't thinking less of myself, but instead thinking of myself less. (Rick Warren)
That is a really good rule of thumb. But how do I do that?
These three character traits are not simply written here haphazardly. No. There is a reason that we find them clumped together. There is a reason we set them apart. There is a reason people tattoo these words on their foot, or stencil them on their wall. Why pastors preach them, and wise men quote them.
It is because God requires this from me, from you, from us all.
Micah 6:8- NLT
"The LORD has told you what is good, and this is what He requires of you; to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God."
He requires it. This isn't negotiable.
Within the very essence of the requirement is the recognition that it is humanly impossible to do. Only through Jesus Christ can we do any of this.
So how do I align this?
Only in reading the word of God, and applying it, can I find a place that protects me from becoming the person who turns a blind eye to the injustices that are so common in our world.
Only in reading the word of God, and applying it, can I find a place that protects me from becoming the person who responds on automatic with a negative attitude about others and life and even myself.
Only in reading the word of God, and applying it, can I think of myself less.
Because as John 1:1 says.
"In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God."
Jesus is the WORD. Feeding on the manna of the word he left us is how we get the ability to do anything good. And one way to do this is to read the Bible.
I fall before the great God who IS and ask Him to teach me. I will fail. But, with an honest heart and a deep desire to learn and serve, I am able to put one foot in front of the other and walk into these requirements.
I constantly pray this prayer:
Father, protect me from myself.
I pray that prayer. Give me what I need to negotiate this difficult life in a godly manner. And the next step to take after that? Being honest and telling God that I don't want to be that kind of person. Help me LORD.
And then I apply HIS grace, the grace that He gave me at the cross, to myself. Because I fail. I fail.
I fall down. I get up. I fall down. I get up.
And the most wonderful treasure I have found in my over half-a-century life in this fallen world:
He reaches down and covers me every time.
Where do you go?
Where do you find the strength to meet the requirement?
How do you live life doing justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly?
Please share how you do it in the comments below.
And we ask you join us in this journey of life in Christ.
Because He is the I AM, i am
Robyn & Biff are happy to invite you to join us and Read the Bible with Robyn Cox
Robyn Rochelle Cox
WHOSE AM I?