How can I overlook it when a friend or family member hurts me?
From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Q: As a Christian, I know I should just overlook it when a friend or family member hurts me but I don’t want to be walked on. This troubles me. What is the right response? – B.E.
A: A woman once wrote a letter describing how fortunate she was to have a kind, considerate husband. She then wrote four pages listing all his faults! How many marriages and other relationships grow cold and eventually are shattered because of faultfinding.
It‘s so easy to take other people for granted or to complain and become angry because they do not meet our every expectation. We should thank God for the people in our lives. We need to give thanks for those around us — our spouses, our children, our relatives, and our friends. If we do that first, we may find that we are not so easily offended.
The Christians in the city of Corinth were far from perfect, but the Apostle Paul began his first letter to them by thanking God for them (1 Corinthians 1:4). Thank God for others who touch our lives.
The Bible is filled with examples of why and how relationships turn bad. It also tells us how to nurture friendship and overlook faults. God’s Word instructs us to pray for discernment and wisdom, and to respond to others with understanding and mercy. After all, this is what Christ has done for us and we are told to “follow His steps” (1 Peter 2:21). God wants us to bring our cares before Him and we should carefully seek His wisdom found in Scripture. “For if you forgive [others] when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you” (Matthew 6:14, NIV).
(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)
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