“Giving Compliments”

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So what do you think? Do you feel that no matter what you do, things don’t turn out the way you expect them to after doing the right thing?

A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1 (NRSV)

“Mommy, they look beautiful” is as soft an answer as I can imagine, and yet here, these words did not turn away wrath.

As I rework this particular graphic strip, I am now thinking of victims of bullying and domestic violence, who have tried every soft answer imaginable with begging and pleading. But they were still beaten up, verbally or physically.

I want so much for this verse to be a promise that will bring God’s protection to those who hold it tightly in their hearts. But I can’t write that, no matter how very much I want it to be true.

Proverbs is a book of wisdom, not necessarily a book of promises. Jesus does have a promise for us though.

…“And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 (NRSV)

There is so much more to this topic than can fit into one post, but it’s something that I want to question and consider in greater depths.

It was only a little over a year ago that I read about and began to consider how God feels our pain right along with us. Previously I had viewed Him as having a sad but “You’ve really brought this on yourself” attitude towards our suffering. God hurts when we hurt is a difficult concept to grasp, at least for me. Maybe for you as well?

It had never occurred to me that He may actually feel our misery with us. I was more comfortable with a God who felt pity or sympathy towards me, but not my actual pain right along with me.

I’m unsure if this post will make any difference to a child or teenager who is being bullied for being different or the person who is being beaten up because they aren’t conforming to what someone else wants, but I do hope that it’s a start.

It never occurred to me that Jesus was bullied and beaten up for being different and for not conforming to what other people wanted. But He was.

One thought on ““Giving Compliments”

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