Avoiding the dangers of offenses (III)

We have bee looking at the issue of offenses. We ended last time by saying that we must understand that every man has a free will which he can use as he wishes. God has given every man the power of choice and freewill. If people decide to use their power of choice and freewill to offend us, we should not be shocked but rather see it as one of those things which we must handle.

One of the surest guarantees against offence is walking in love. We must make up our minds to walk in love – agape love. When we walk in agape love – the God kind of love that loves in spite and despite anything, we are not likely to stumble when offences come.

“Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” 1 Corinthians 13: 7 New Living Translation.

Love believes the best of people; Love always makes excuses for people’s actions and in-actions. Love would say ‘If only he knew, he would not have…’

Agape love is not necessarily a feeling but primarily a decision – an act of the will. We decide to walk in love no matter how we feel.

When offences come, our response or reaction to it reveals a lot of things. It provides us with an opportunity to examine ourselves. When we are offended, our weak points, many times, are revealed. Our vulnerable points are exposed. Many times our reaction to offences can reveal that we are too sensitive, edgy, touchy or irritable; it can show if we are spineless, unable to handle pressure and unfair criticisms. It can show we have the tendency to give up easily. Many times, offences exposes our abilities to write people off and give up on them. It shows the strength of our tolerance. It shows whether we can really endure hard times.

“If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.” Proverbs 24:10.

When we get offended, we therefore, need to look inward to examine ourselves. If we are going to have great influence on people, we cannot afford to be weighed down by offences as they are distractions. The only way to avoid distraction is to be prepared. Love makes allowances for people’s faults and it forgives upfront.

Forgiveness is a virtue that we cannot afford not to cultivate – be quick to forgive. Forgiveness, like love, is not necessarily a feeling but primarily a decision of the will.

“People must offend you but as a wise person you have to ignore such offences. Forgiveness is not something you do for other people, it is what you do for yourself to help you go forward. The more you forgive, the more you go forward and the more you get well. Offence serves as a retarding factor to progress in the life of a Christian. Once you possess a nature of offence, you can never go forward in life. Learn to always guide your heart from offences.”  David Ibiyeomie

When we are quick to forgive, offence will not have an inroad into our lives.

TO BE CONTINUED

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