Stubborn, Who Me?

Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters.
Make sure that your own hearts
are not evil and unbelieving,
turning you away from the living God.

You must warn each other every day,
as long as it is called “today,”
so that none of you
will be deceived by sin
and hardened against God.
Heb 3:12-13

What do I do when I face stubbornness in someone who I call a Brother or Sister in Christ? What about my own stubbornness? Does it seem that sometimes there are people who take everything you say or do takes it aken wrongly or uses it against you? Have you felt that you were under arrest and that they were just waiting for you to make a wrong move so they could shoot you down? There have been those who have crossed my path at times that seemed they were just looking for me to say or do something wrong, that no matter what I did, they took it wrong. In the end I just gave up and let them believe what they wanted to believe. Because, when I tried to explain to them what I really wanted to say, I still didn't say it to their liking!

I was praying about this one day and while reading Mark 3 where Jesus was in the temple and a man with a withered hand had an encounter with Jesus: " Since it was the Sabbath, Jesus' enemies watched him closely. Would he heal the man's hand on the Sabbath? If he did, they planned to condemn him. Jesus said to the man, 'Come and stand in front of everyone.' Then he turned to his critics and asked, 'Is it legal to do good deeds on the Sabbath, or is it a day for doing harm? Is this a day to save life or to destroy it?' But they wouldn't answer him. He looked around at them angrily, because he was deeply disturbed by their hard hearts. Then he said to the man, 'Reach out your hand.' The man reached out his hand, and it became normal again! At once the Pharisees went away and met with the supporters of Herod to discuss plans for killing Jesus (Mark 3:2-6)."

Jesus is doing a wonderful miracle here, but these folks are hating Him with every core of their being. Instead of rejoicing over this wonderful miracle of a withered hand being made whole they begin plotting amongst themselves how to have Him killed.

There are two things the Lord brought to my attention here. First, that even in the face of unbelief Jesus aggressively went ahead with what God had appointed him to do. Second, even though He was disturbed by the hardness of their hearts He did it anyway. This has not been the pattern for my life.

When I sensed that I was not liked or accepted by someone I let these things hinder me from doing what God put in my heart to do. When I'm disturbed by a hardened heart I tend to "clam up" instead of letting boldness rise up, and taking the authority that Christ has placed upon me. Many times the anointing of God is quenched when we allow the hardness of the hearts of the people we so long to know the goodness of the Lord don't accept us.

Now, here is what I believe the Lord wanted me to see. When He has shown me His purpose, I have the authority and the power to be obedient to His will, no matter what others may think. Now if I move ahead, going on assumption that in my opinion is the way Jesus would do it, then I have leaned on my own understanding, not bothering to find out what God wanted for the situation. Then I am apt to fail in my stubbornness to have things my way. " Pride leads to arguments; those who take advice are wise Proverbs 13:10."

Lord I pray today that I will seek Your will for my life, so that in each situation I face, You will be the Lord of my life; that I will be led by Your Spirit, and not my selfish ambitions, opinions and the stubbornness of my own heart. I pray that I will not be willful nor unreasonable. Lord, I pray that your love will consume my heart and wash away anything I have in my heart that is not pleasing to you.

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. 1 Cor 13:4-7

In His Love
Karen Trevino

All Scripture taken from NLT

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