Friday, September 21, 2012

Overlooking Offenses

"The greatest leaders I know are not easily offended. Instead, they practice the habit of overlooking offenses. They take the high road, give the offender the benefit of the doubt, and move on." ~ Michael Hyatt, "Why Leaders Cannot Afford to Be Easily Offended"

The article I just linked above is well worth reading. It is mainly focused on leadership but anyone, leader or not, can benefit from reading it. So, go ahead and go read it. I can wait...

Now that you are back, I want to focus on the above quote. I think it is very wise because if we do not choose to overlook offenses, we will become bitter and bitterness hurts us, not the offending party. Someone once said that bitterness is a poison we drink thinking it will hurt the other person. But in reality, bitterness erodes at our hearts and disturbs our lives, while the offending party moves on. Whether they were trying to be offensive or not, whether they ask for forgiveness or not, the best thing we can do for our own hearts is to learn to forgive offenses before we become bitter. If we do not, the bitterness only poisons our own souls.

One thing I have learned in my marriage and the Church is that it is best to assume a person is not trying to hurt or offend you until you have overwhelming evidence to the contrary. A lot of fights, controversies, and division could be avoided if we would simply give each other the benefit of the doubt. We owe that to each other as brothers and sisters in Christ; it is part of loving our neighbor as ourselves. We would want the benefit of a doubt, right? We should give it to others.

By His Grace,

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