A person’s wisdom yields patience;
it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense. – Proverbs 19:11
React, don’t think. That’s the mantra of our day and age. Social media and text messaging allows for instantaneous response to a hurtful or offensive word. The worst part about these types of communication is that we can read offense into just about anything. Without the benefit of tone or posture, we can create offensive or hurtful meaning into just about anything that we see on our phone or computer screen. This leads to rash responses and the cycle can speed up and become more and more dangerous to our relationships.
This proverb gives us a timely reminder that a man with good sense is the one who can overlook an offense and not be quick to anger. Imagine how quickly arguments could dissipate if we were to simply let the words of another roll off our backs.
I’ve spoken about this before, but the enemy seeks to destroy the relationships in the body of Christ. He wants nothing more than to see fellow Christians at each other’s throats in anger and bitterness. Let us think before we react, let us be slow to provocation, let us overlook the in-the-moment offenses of a friend or fellow brother or sister in Christ.
Let us become a church known for its sensibility on social media and in conversations in general. Let us become a church known for the way it embodies peace and thus points others to the Prince of Peace.
Father God, teach me how to act instead of react. Teach me how to overlook the offenses of my brothers and sisters in Christ, just as you have been faithful to overlook mine. Help me to become slow to anger, willing to forgive and forget. Help me to model this peaceful disposition amid a culture that is absent of this peace. In Jesus’ name, amen.
– Nathan Roach