Take The First Step

Mijos – if you’re ever faced with conflict, be the first to examine your own actions.

3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4 How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye."- Matthew 7:3-5

This extends to just about everything. Had an argument with your mother? Apologize. Fighting with your brother or sister? Apologize. Took something by accident? Don’t wait for them to notice – take it back; immediately! Have a disagreement with your coworker? Break bread with them and find common ground.

But this doesn’t mean that you become a doormat. You must have respect for yourselves as well, as you do others.

38 You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ 39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well.” Matthew 5:38-40

This last verse is an interesting one – our pastor had a perspective I had not heard about, that I think speaks volumes to the passion that God has for us. God wasn’t just simply saying that you needed to allow the other person to step over you by offering your other cheek – He was telling you to have respect for yourself, by standing up and allowing them to go deeper into the hole that they created by disrespecting you, so that they may see that you have respect for yourself. Jesus did this for us when He died on the cross, and it’s important for us to do this for those around us, as we are a light on a hill.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-5

So – go forth and make that first step in each conflict – you’ll reflect Jesus in each of those steps, and people will begin to wonder what gives you power – and you’ll be able to reflect God’s love for them.

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