I was talking with someone the other day and in the course of the conversation the comment was made by her, "That's okay. I'm not easily offended."
When she made that comment I stopped and started thinking. Most of my life I have been around people that become easily offended. If I do something against someone's "religion" they get offended. If I say something about someone's race, they get offended. If I say something about the "woke" community, they get offended. Our world today is a breeding ground for walking in offense. People become offended over many things.
What do you think happens if people walk in offense?
Words are spoken that are not necessary. Hearing words then triggers actions. Situations escalate out of control.
What would happen if we all stopped and LISTENED to the other people? Maybe what the person is saying isn't really offensive? What if their words are spoken to try and hear what you are saying and bring clarity to a situation? What happens if what you think is truth isn't really truth and you should be listening to someone instead of shutting them out and taking offense?
I'm not saying there are not times that we need to speak up and take offense to an action that has occurred. There are times that we must take a stance and speak up. HOW we do that is important.
One of the things I always say I enjoyed about living in Israel is that most people could agree to disagree. What drew me in to discussions in Israel was that we could talk, and actually argue about topics, and at the end of the day when we separated, we could still hug and laugh and know that we would get together again. That rarely happens in the US. Once you disagree with someone...
At that time many will be trapped into betraying and hating each other, many false prophets will appear and fool many people; and many people’s love will grow cold because of increased distance from Torah. (CJB)
And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. KJV
Those who love your Torah have great peace;
nothing makes them stumble.(CJB)
Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them. (KJV)
As you read the differences in the translations above, I believe you will be challenged into understanding that we need to be "on guard" and ready to defend the TRUTH of the Word of God, but we should not walk in offense when someone disagrees with us. Offense causes us to stumble and say and do things we should not do. I appreciate how the CJB says, "trapped into betraying and hating each other." Being offended causes us to become trapped... Interesting concept!
As I'm typing this I realize that explaining my thoughts may not be easy. However, I think the idea that comes to mind of what I am trying to say is, it is okay for us to defend the Word of God. It is not okay to walk in offense and cause strife when we disagree with someone else.
This week as you are living life, stop and check yourself. Are you easily offended and walking in frustration and anger? Or are you taking time to STOP and listen to the other person and carry on a discussion that brings clarity and understanding? Are you willing to work alongside those who are different than you and find a common ground?
I believe that if more of us took the time to do the latter that our world would be filled with more LOVE.
Love and blessings,