Responding To Slander
Posted: Thursday, September 12
2 CORINTHIANS 12:11-21
Verse of the day
“O God, have mercy on me, for people are hounding me. My foes attack me all day long. I am constantly hounded by those who slander me, and many are boldly attacking me. But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?”
Of all the Biblical principles that I very much agree with… but in my human nature strongly dislike… you would find the top of the list occupied by God’s command to turn the other cheek when someone wrongs us. I have a very strong sense of justice in me, which can be a good thing, and can also create unrealistic expectations of others, and leave an open door to resentment in myself. This is even stronger in me when someone wrongs or speaks ill of someone that I care about, and I find myself fighting giving that resentment a foothold. In the deepest part of my soul, I know that God is in control, but in the moment it becomes so hard to let go and let God fight my battles.
David’s encouragement here in the face of his literal enemy the Philistines is a great example of the right way to handle someone wronging us. He immediately goes to God and tells him about his concerns. Then, as soon as he gives them, he immediately shifts his tone to reliance on God. He airs his hurt and grievances, and then gives them to God. “But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you…. I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?” That is such a Godly example of how to respond to the slander and attacks of others.
It is so natural for me, and I think in general for all of us, to want to fight for what’s right. We feel that we can actually do something about the injustice done to us or to those we love, and want to fight back against what has happened. However that is not what God shows us over and over again is the right response. If we can truly surrender those feelings to God, he will always fight our battle. I have never surrendered a situation to God, and been unsatisfied with the results. I would rather have God’s will covering my life than my own sense of justice… even if it means I have to turn the other cheek.