Words from the Heart for Monday November 7th, 2016
If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
Romans 12:18 (NIV)
Live at Peace
Do you need to overlook a fault? Is there a petty issue that you need to drop? In what ways can you be a peacemaker today? How can you be the one who stops being part of the problem and starts being part of the solution?
An 80-year-old known as the “Black Widow” for killing and poisoning men who were her intimate partners has been under police surveillance since being released from a Nova Scotia prison in April of this year. James Giagomantonia, a Crown lawyer, spoke to reporters outside a courthouse in Dartmouth this past May that they were keeping “very close eyes on her.” He also confirmed that Melissa Ann Shepard must continue to adhere to conditions in a peace bond she agreed to upon her release. He added “There’s nothing more we can do to someone who hasn’t committed a criminal offence. The most we can do is find out where she lives and then put these protections in place so that she has at least some barriers to meeting a new potential victim.”
We are only responsible for our own actions. If you are in the midst of dealing with a stressful relationship the Bible gives some advice, and it’s found in a little phrase in the midst of Romans 12:18. Paul writes this: “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” The Bible is a realistic book. It recognizes that not everyone is easy to get along with. There will be people in our lives who are challenging and who can make our lives difficult. Only the Lord can change their hearts and longs to do so. But we are responsible to do everything we can to get along peacefully with those people. So he writes, “live at peace with everyone.” But recognizing that this is not going to be easy, he begins by saying “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you.” So, when you are facing a strained relationship, rather than becoming immediately accusatory, instead take some personal inventory. Ask “is there anything I have done that has caused this tension, this conflict?” If so, deal with that and ask the Lord to empower you to change. You must do all you can to ease the tension and heal the relationship. But there is more. As difficult as that might be, you should go to that person and see if you can bring peace. If that doesn’t work, pray, and ask God to heal their heart and the relationship.
These have been words from the heart.