Sunday, August 8, 2010

Verse of the week -- Proverbs 10:11, 12

Elementary age kids tend to have a heightened concern for justice. They want life to be fair. They don't want people to get away with things. They perceive many judgment calls as black and white with very little gray.

I can relate.

When someone slips through the cracks, but I get held accountable I feel slighted. "Big" sins cannot go ignored. Sinful people don't deserve blessings. I secretly think karma should exist.

God pulled me aside and whispered these words in my ear from Proverbs 10:11,12, "11The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked. 12Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins."

Love covers all sins.

Sometimes I need to bring more mercy to the "woodshed" and less harsh criticism. When love taints my actions it also soften others' reactions. Hatred definitely has no place there as it only brings negativity and defensiveness.

The story of Jesus and the woman caught in adultery came to mind as I contemplated this. I dug out John 8 to reread it for myself. Woman in sin. Stones raised in accusation, but also to test Jesus' response.

Jesus remains quiet. Stoops, waits for the crowd to disperse, some need the quiet point made, "Go ahead, those of you that have not sinned, start the stoning." The older, now wiser and humbled, individuals walk away.

Jesus refuses to condemn. Jesus loves. Was she innocent? no, just forgiven.

He sends her on her way with an encouragement to change her ways. Likely she did.

How would my kids respond if I wrapped each interaction in love, and left the condemnation elsewhere? It isn't always necessary to point fingers. More often than not, they know what they did wrong, and what they deserve.

I can give mercy a little more often than I do. Especially as they grow, a gentle word of non-condemnation will likely accomplish more than a "thrown stone". Even as they wallow in a perspective of extreme justice, they can begin to see a radically new viewpoint, one of mercy and love. Not ignoring the sin, but recognizing it as forgiven, paid for.

God is so good to me. Not forgetting my faults, but taking care of them Himself. I can step in and model the same to my children, and understand God's love a little more in the process.

"11The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked. 12Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins."

~Proverbs 10:11,12~

1 comment:

Jessica Doyle said...

Erin, just what I needed to hear! Thanks for the encouragement :-)