Your Morning Coffee 03/22/2023
Welcome to your morning coffee! May our Heavenly Father rekindle in us a divine desire to respond to evil with good. Father, I am so easily offended. I am so quick in my thoughts and in my heart to dream vengeful fantasies against those who hurt me and treat me poorly. Please help me Father. Help me to repent of my desire to "get back" at other people. Help me to embrace your command and equipping to love those who hate me. Help me to respond to others' evil with your good. In Jesus name please help me to be known by the world around me someone who seeks and makes peace. Amen.
Your Morning Song: "This Little Light of Mine" by Rend Collective
Your Morning Scripture: Romans 12:18-21
If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Have you ever heard of "semantic satiation?" It is defined as, "a psychological phenomenon in which repetition causes a word or phrase to temporarily lose meaning for the listener, who then perceives the speech as repeated meaningless sounds." In short, sometimes when we say some words enough times, they lose meaning. They become only sounds.
Sometimes we make this mistake with scripture. We read some verses made up of words, but we don't really dig into what we are reading. We don't actively consider what it means. We read the words, get a surface sense of their general meaning, and then move on.
I've found in my own life as someone who teaches the Bible that is our most common, practical, daily struggle when it comes to reading scripture. I struggle with it as well, and often find myself amazed at how much I've missed over the years of reading the Bible. It is so easy to let the words in the Bible just wash over us without gaining anything more than a surface understand of what we've just read. And these verses above are a very good example of this phenomenon.
How many of us are willing to strive to live at peace with others, even if we're the only ones trying? Sometimes saying "I'm sorry" isn't an admission of wrong, but just another way of saying, "I love you."
How many of us refuse to dream up vengeful fantasies about people who've hurt us unjustly? God's commands are to obeyed in our thoughts, and then, from there, our actions.
How many of us, on God's terms, are willing to anoint the heads of our enemies with the burning coals of kindness? Our kindness has nothing to do with who "they" are and everything to do with who we are in Christ.
How many of us are willing to set aside being offended so that we can show radical, otherworldly love to those who hate us? The less we like someone, the more intentional we should be in treating them unreasonably well. Let their evil be overwhelmed by our good.
How often and how easily do we forget that in God's Kingdom everything is upside down. The weak are strong, and the strong are weak. The first will be last and the last will be first. The faithful poor are the nobility of the Kingdom while the faithless rich are not even allowed in.
And even now, we citizens of God's Kingdom, we children of the King, are told to daily fight on the terms of our King and with the tools that He has given us. Are we living in daily obedience to these verses? Or are we children playing in our father's clothes, pretending to be someone we are eternally not?
May we be a people known as "Good No Matter What."