I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. -Psalm 119:11
By Shana Schutte
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9
When I was an elementary school teacher, one of my coworkers received red roses. I asked, “Oooh—who sent you the beautiful flowers?” She sighed. “They’re from my ex-husband. He cheated on me, and I divorced him two years ago. Now he feels bad about what happened, so every Friday for the last two years he’s sent me a dozen red roses.” Disdain filled her eyes.
I was sad for my co-worker, but also for her ex-husband. He had been deceived into sin and I wondered if he hadn’t received Christ’s forgiveness. Perhaps he thought that only his ex-wife’s forgiveness could set him free from his guilt. Romans 12:18 says. . .
“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”
Have you ever had a time when you have sought forgiveness or reconciliation from someone to no avail? There will be times in all of our lives when, even though we have done our “as far as it depends on you” and followed biblical guidelines for peacemaking, that all the roses in the world won’t help. No doubt this can be difficult. When this happens, we must remember our relational knots may stay tangled. You may never understand what happened in your relationship. If the other person left, you may never know why they walked away. But you can experience freedom in your heart, when you are obedient to Christ by following Romans 12:18. You can be at peace with yourself, even if the other party isn’t at peace with you. Restoration can happen in your heart, even if the relationship isn’t what it once was.
Remember Christ doesn’t measure success in results, but in terms of faithful obedience. I encourage you to make it your goal to please Him when you have relational conflict.
Prayer: Lord, please help me to follow your plan for my relationships. When the times come that others don’t want to reconcile or make peace, help me to always do my part and follow your Word. Amen.