2018-07-02 - Attitude is Everything
Even the God-fearing prophet Paul had to deal with difficulty. "Alexander, the metalworker, has hurt me in many ways. But the Lord will pay him back for what he has done." (2 Timothy 4:14 CEV)
Paul's attitude toward opponent Alexander guides us when we deal with difficult people.
- Let God be in Charge. It was not Paul's job to convert Alexander, nor did Paul believe Alexander would change. There are times when we need God to settle the score. For the Lord says, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time, their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near, and their doom rushes upon them.” (Deuteronomy 32:35 NIV) Paul didn't hold onto a grudge. Instead, he let God deal with an enemy.
- Keep Your Guard up. I imagine metal worker Alexander as a hard-working, skilled tradesman, who was not open to the gospel, nor quiet about his beliefs. This man was not to be trusted. Paul left his guard up, and warned Timothy to do the same. "Alexander opposes what we preach. You had better watch out for him." (2 Timothy 4:15 CEV)
- Stay Positive Amidst Adversity. Even in an uncomfortable and unfavorable situation, Paul gave God praise. He focused on the good. Paul doesn't gloss over the bad; he recognizes it, but doesn’t let it get him down. God gave Paul strength to keep preaching. "The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack, and will bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen." (2 Timothy 4:18 NIV) Paul knew God would not abandon him. When we face opposition, the Lord also stays with us.
Lord, show me how to not hold grudges, and when to let You be judge. I know You will come through for me. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.
All scripture references are from the New International Version (NIV) unless otherwise noted.
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