Listen to this devotional:
Colossians 3:8 – But now you must rid yourself of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander and filthy language from your lips. (NIV)
Over the past few months, I have heard several people saying, "What would Jesus do?" in relationship to different situations in their lives. Well, today, I was given the opportunity to walk it out in my own life.
The past two days have been very windy where we live. Overnight, the wind continued to be strong, and it knocked our garbage can over onto the ground.
Early this morning, there was knock on our door, and our neighbour was none too happy at finding our stray papers. As she angrily made me aware of this, I found myself forming an explanation, and anger was rising within me. When she had finished her rampage, though, I simply replied that I would take care of it. After she left, I armed myself with a garbage bag and went out to collect the papers. Much to my surprise, there were only four pieces of paper to be found. I checked all around and came back with four pieces of paper in one hand and the garbage bag in the other. Well, now, my comment, "I will take care of it" was changing to "I will take care of you." Back out I went and found four cigarette butts on my lawn that had possibly come from their property, as they both smoke, and I carefully laid them on their path with the satisfied thought, "There, take that!"
I had not even made it back to my yard when the phrase, "What would Jesus do?" began ringing in my ears. I knew that He would not have done what I just did. I went back and removed the butts, and even picked up a few more wayward pieces of paper, and then returned to my house.
Leviticus 19:18 – Don't seek revenge or carry a grudge against any of your people. Love your neighbor as yourself. I am God. (MSG)
As I went about my day, I was no longer riled or bothered about the actions of my neighbour. In fact, my day was a day of blessing others whom the Lord brought into my path. So, unlike that person of old who would have taken matters into her own hands, I stopped and sought the way of the Lord. Today, I found that letting the Lord have my trials was so much more of a blessing to me.
Psalm 138:5 – May they sing of the ways of the Lord, for the glory of the Lord is great. (NIV)
Prayer: Dear Jesus, we are sorry for the times when we feel we can take matters into our own hands. Lord, thank You for sending Your Holy Spirit to guide us back to Yourself and to teach us how to handle things in love and grace. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.