Live Peaceably

But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. – Matthew 5:44 NKJV.

A wrathful man stirs up strife, but he who is slow to anger allays contention. – Proverbs 15:18 NKJV. 

Have you ever worn your “feelings on your sleeve?” Got a “chip on your shoulder?” It seems as though more and more people are doing exactly that. It does not take very much to offend people anymore and the chip on their shoulder is balanced very precariously. To avoid hurting the feelings of others is becoming more and more difficult. 

It may be the high-tech world in which we live. In a Gallop Poll, 64% of workers find getting equipment (computers, copiers, printers, faxes, etc.) to work properly is a frustrating task. Another part of the poll found one out of six were made angry by someone they worked with during the past year. The poll also found that 22% of those under age 35 working in office, sales, or clerical jobs felt like hitting someone.

I would like to see a poll of those using the Internet. How many using the Internet would like to hit someone they are communicating with? Maybe it is because we are somewhat anonymous and feel freer to express how we really feel. Since being online I have lost track of the number of times I have received emails cursing me with obscene language. One man in the past even threatened to kill me. I would submit to you that being slammed by someone online hurts some of us just as much as it would in person. Words printed out are far more permanent and longer lasting than spoken words.

The apostle Paul shares some excellent advice with us in Romans 12:18-21:

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.  

Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

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