Living out God’s higher plan

By Dave Henning / December 23, 2013

“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.” -Luke 6: 27-28

As Stephen Mansfield concludes Chapter 5 of Healing Your Church Hurt, he confesses that he failed many time to forgive those involved in his church hurt.  He finally decided to make a list of all the people whose actions lived in his memory as a source of bitterness and pain.

Stephen literally fulfilled the words of Luke 6: 28.  Each day he held the names of his enemies before God, praying for them and blessing them.  Stephen spoke positive words from Scripture over their lives.  As time went on, Stephen noticed that the biggest change was in him and that his passion for God slowly began to return.  He discovered, as Frederic Buechner wrote in Wishful Thinking, that anger isn’t all it’s cracked up to be:

“Of the Seven Deadly Sins, anger is possibly the most fun.  To lick your wounds, to smack your lips over grievances long past, . . . to savor to the last toothsome morsel both the pain you are given and the pain you are giving back- in many ways it is a feast fit for a king.  The chief drawback is that what you are wolfing down is yourself.  The skeleton at the feast is you.”

Through the Holy Spirit’s power we, like Stephen, must live out the higher plan chosen for us by a loving God.

Today’s question: How can you be intentional in applying Luke 6: 28 to those involved in your vocation loss?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Welcoming a deeper work of God”

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Dave Henning

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