A small but loaded phrase from the booklet I am reading...
'... it is always best to postpone negative reactions under the government of grace...'
Why? We have redemptive motivations.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another." - Galatians 5:22-26 ESV
Patience, long suffering and self control are really thing God does in us and through us. We often have a moment of decision... a moment when we can look into the future instead of having a present reaction. A moment when the lit match that would ignite us is being held between our thumb and index finger. Will we drop it into the kindling or blow it out?
I want to keep in step with the Spirit. I choose to let the mind of Christ dwell in me richly and look to a redemptive future.
We all can have sore spots that cause us to flinch if touched but the choice to bare our teeth or not is ours. Mercy gives what isn't deserved and grace assigns favor based on God's value system. Reacting isn't going to ease the pain and God has healing in His wings if that is where we choose to dwell.
"Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied; by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities." - Isaiah 53:11 ESV
"For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering." - Hebrews 2:10 ESV
Jesus came as a servant and learned something from it. He was perfected through the suffering of his passion (his journey to the cross). That is baffling to think about but it is true. The God-man learned something this way?
He came into the journey to the cross with redemptive knowledge and a redemptive attitude and He came through it 'perfected.' Wow. God can do that for us also... on a different scale but it is the same dynamic.
Are we available for that? Perhaps our rights and opinions mean more to us than they should.