Do not repay evil with evil: Is my first response love?

Three boys at the park

Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.” – 1 Peter 3:8-9

As I read this scripture last night I felt like God was speaking to me through it but wasn’t sure what it was. I thought through my life and the people who I felt have wronged me. I have forgiven each of them and have spoken blessing over them to the best of my knowledge. Regardless of my thoughts, the feeling that God wanted to communicate something to me through the verse wouldn’t go away.

After working I went to bed without a thought in my mind. I had one dream I remember and it was weird (like most). In the dream I had been staying in a home with a friend. I had some keepsakes from my kids in the home. A greedy land baron was trying to take the land from me. I left to go help with something and when I came back the house had been leveled to the ground and cement had filled the foundation of where the house had been. As a result, I was furious. My keepsakes and home were gone. The land baron who had done it was laughing. I went to him and shook him. I was trying to keep myself from punching him. Hate filled me. Consequently, I wanted him to feel my pain. I then woke up.

Dreams don’t accurately reflect who I am but can sometimes reveal what is happening in my heart. In the dream I wanted to repay evil with evil.

I then began to talk to God. I told Him that in my heart I often want “justice” as a first response. Then I asked God to take this desire away from me and give me a heart of love. I asked for my first response to be love. The scripture says the result of blessing others is that we will be blessed!

As I drove to work I had a song in my head, as I often do, and wasn’t consciously thinking about it. I don’t own the CD and hadn’t listened to the song in a while. The song is “Give My Life to You” by Elevation Worship. I kept singing the lyrics, (although not quite word for word):

I give my life to you
My heart to you
You’re all I need
Come and make me new

He was speaking to me through the song I was singing. I was speaking to myself through the song I was singing. We are changed into his image. It is a process. Conviction is a good thing. When we are convicted we have an opportunity to be more like Jesus. As I give up my desires to Him, He makes me new. He gives me His desires.

If you are struggling with a desire that isn’t good, I encourage you to give it to God and ask Him to replace it with His desire. He is faithful!

And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. – Philippians 1:6

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *