Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Grapes of Wrath

Do you ever get mad at someone? (Maybe you're laughing because it happens so often). Anger is not my go-to. I'm more of a crier. However, I find myself having very little patience when I feel like someone--okay let's be real I'm talking about my husband--wrongs me. I have a knack for evaluating what people are doing well and what they could improve on. It's how I'll grade papers later. Sometimes, though, it gets me in trouble. I always catch the mistakes. At times, they make my anger flare up. I find that when I am mad at Phil, and I feel like I have the right to be mad at him based on his actions, I have the hardest time extending love to him.

I was reading in Ephesians recently. This is one of the books of the bible I go back to over and over. It is so easy for me to read. I was in chapter two and Paul (a hardcore Pharisee who used to pursue and kill Christians, who had a personal encounter with Christ and spent the rest of his life preaching the Gospel) was talking to some Christians about the state they were in before they surrendered their lives over to Jesus. He describes them as, "children of wrath." Who's wrath were they under? I asked myself. I realized they were under God's wrath because they had wronged him: sinned. I was under God's wrath for what I had done. It's like God was rightfully mad at us for our actions against him. That's when God chose to extend us the ultimate act of love. The passage goes on to say: "But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ." When I feel like I have the right to be mad at Phil I have the hardest time loving him. When God had every right to put us under his wrath, he sent his son Jesus to stand in our place and absorb that wrath so that we could be forgiven and return to his presence. God's love is so much bigger than mine.

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