The thief named Offense

Updated: Dec 28, 2019

Hi, I'm offense, I look for heated arguments to sneak into so I can place a wedge to prevent true fellowship. I open the door for hurt to go deep into the hearts of people. I often wait until the perfect second to do my best work. I love misunderstandings. If you let me in I’ll keep the walls high so no one gets in. With me you will never learn how to love. I’ll help you keep people at arms length. Believe me you have a right to be mad and they don't deserve your forgiveness. They deserve nothing but your punishment. You not talking to them makes them miserable. Thank you for letting me convince you that there is no need to make things right. You will certainly not need any reconciliation as long as we are friends. Even though your a Christian you can still have unresolved offenses especially if they are justified. I promise to keep peace, rest, and joy far away from you. I'll make sure your circle of friends gets smaller and smaller. Before you know it I’ll have you all to myself. It’s better that way. With me on your side you be sure to never get hurt again. During this time of year you will be forced out of your comfort zone in some way. We need to be out of comfort zone to grow. This season you will also made aware of any offense that has remained dormant in your heart toward your family members. News flash! As you live life you will get offended and you will offend. We are all created differently so we will have differences. Period. End of story. The devil is able to thrive in your life when there is disunity and offense. How you handle offenses will determine your quality of life in the future. You can be better or bitter. You can’t be both. Here are some offensive things:The gospel is offensive. Loud music is offensive.The clothes you wear are offensive. The way you talk is offensive. Opinions are offensive. Politics are offensive. So you will run into offense. 100% guaranteed. I have worked for many bosses that didn’t like me. I am normally a very happy guy and believe it or not some people don’t like all that. They would cuss me, say ugly words to harm me but I would just take it knowing they were hurting in the inside. It’s like they were looking to see if I would blow up on them. Of course like everyone else I wanted to beat the skin off their face but what good would that do. Will that help them? Certainly not. They needed love and truth. I learned that in life you need some thick skin. People say hurtful things but life goes on. I’m not a victim I’m a warrior. I was very ugly to people before I came to know Christ. I have also been ugly to people after coming to know Christ, that’s how I figured out what grace truly was. I needed it. I was angry inside before Christ. I was always wondering what is wrong with me? Why did my dad reject me? The people that treat you bad have questions they struggle with. I sometimes cause offense and don’t even know it until someone tells me. I am very thankful for each person that has let me know. I want to be made aware. So please let me know if I have done something out of line. It’s simple. Let’s have coffee. Let’s have peace and harmony. You may not know this but I am a very aggressive strong leader. I was radically changed by the power of God. I have extremely high convictions given to me by the Holy Spirit. People that may chose to live in compromise get offended at some of my statements. This is really out of my hands. I can control the way it’s presented for sure. I do try to be sensitive. I share my statements on how the Lord speaks to me. He is a gentleman at times but he also is very frank in his comments to me. He desires me to be holy. I fall short of the mark daily in some way but I promise you I shoot as close daily as I can! I try very hard not to push my convictions on people but strive to love them where they are. Someone once loved on me in my compromise. They also told me in love that I was living in compromise very kindly. Tough love can be offensive but it can also save your life. The Bible says to speak the truth in love. I have spoken out of turn before and it didn’t accomplish what I hoped it would. It damaged. Crash and burn. Sometimes the Holy Spirit will show us things we need to pray for a person for. We often times think that means to tell them. I am still learning this process.

It’s all about presentation.

In my 14 years of being a Christian I have learned that gossip and judging people is not OK. Even though it’s easy to do. We must love and speak life. We do have to be careful not to be so talkative. Talking too much leads to trouble. Let’s your talk be wholesome and positive. I’m certainly trying to make mine more wholesome. Here is a question I asked myself when I was offended recently. Could it be that you are experiencing great offense because you have caused God great offense? I want us to look at offense from all angles to see what’s really going on. What offends God:-adultery-idol worship -sexual immorality -prayerlessness-unbelief-gossip/slander -sin -compromise God always wants to do work in us where we may have problems or hidden hurts. We must love and forgive! Today is the day, now is the time for repentance. I do everything I do out of love for him. I may not do it perfect but I do something. Let his love drive you to do inventory. Let’s do a heart check. Let’s get things right with God. Tommorow may not come. I wonder if God is wanting to do more in your life and offense is holding him back. There are things in our life that can hinder God’s work. They stop up his flow if your picking up what I’m putting down. My biggest offensive came from my dad at a early age. Come to find out it was a misunderstanding. God healed it after we had a conversation. I totally didn’t have to live a life of anger and destruction. It was a choice I made. Other offensive things that have happened to me are: Being arrested, being ignored, being falsely accused, being cussed out, being beat up, being taken advantage of financially, being led astray, being manipulated, etc.... I chose to forgive in all these situations because in the Bible you are commanded to forgive. If we forgive God will forgive our sins. If we don’t he won’t. That’s pretty strong wording. We can’t get around it. We can only choose to live offense free. We know it will happen at some point. We just have to choose to talk it through so we can reach a conclusion of harmony and peace with each other. ““If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you.”Matthew 6:14 I hear people say, “I’m not talking to them anymore.” I often wonder is that what Jesus was talking about. That kind of offense. Could it be that us not wanting to talk through issues jeopardize our forgiveness of our sins? Does it jeopardize our place in the lambs book of life? I’m not chancing it. I will say this I won’t allow offense to take my place of experiencing freedom, peace, rest, and heaven on earth. Being offended is like drinking poison, hoping the other person dies. The one offended is the one who loses the quality of life. So can we really say we have been forgiven of our past life if we chose to be offended. “Hatred stirs up quarrels, but love makes up for all offenses.”Proverbs 10:12 NLT Gossip and slander are the worst. It stirs up offense. Honor and kind words are the way to life with humans. Family is where most offensive situations occur. I have watched my family work through terrible situations. I am so so proud of everyone. Seriously. We have chosen to be close in the midst of any trial. The other day I heard the spirit of God say the other day. “I love seeing people work together despite’s their differences. “ In the midst they chose to love. Perception, expectation, and communication have a lot to do with offense. Perception:“They are pure in their own eyes, but they are filthy and unwashed.”Proverbs 30:12 NLT Well I thought they said this.....Well I wanted them to......Well I seen how they....... The devil loves to divide. The people that chose to remain offended care more about their rights or feelings than they do the relationships they stand to keep. God has done most everything in my life through relationships. The devil knows how to cut off the supply lines to your life. When I get offended with someone I wonder, why is this happening? Then I realize there is probably some part of my future hidden in that person. I must push past differences to dig and find the treasure. When people call u out you have a choice to be offended or be better. When you are challenged you will have a chance to get offended. People that love you and see you living in much less than they know God has for you will offend you with the truth. I don’t want to live average. I want to live to the fullest. I mean you only live one time. If someone offends me but it causes me to live to the fullest the offense was worth it. Let us tell others the plan of God with love and compassion. Let us be known by our love for each other and for others. Talking through offense grows the relationship. I have a friend that we have been through all kinds of seasons and I can tell you we have a rich relationship. Full of love. It’s been tested and tried throughly.

If your going to be committed to anyone or anything you have to learn how to deal with offense.

Being a married man, I have said many ugly things and had many ugly things said about me. I could:A. Sit and cry. B. Become numb and ignore it. C. Be mature and deal with it and move on. D. Complain and be a victim. I have lived all of them to just be real. I am learning to do C quicker. Christine and I are both very strong leaders. I’m loud, she is quiet. So we cross offense daily. We chose to forgive, give room for error, and love. I read a book by John Bevere called the “bait of Satan.” Best book I have read on the stronghold of offense. I am a man of many words. In my 36 years of living I never realized much of what comes out of our mouth takes place in our lives. We speak negatively then we begin to see it happen in our lives. We speak positively then again we see it take place in our lives. We may say a ugly word to someone this in turn causes damage for them. I worked in the auto industry for 20 years. Very often the boss would be under pressure and cuss out the workers. This makes for a toxic environment. I never enjoyed it but I needed a job so you can’t just up and quit because someone is ugly to you. I also do not recommend letting people treat you bad without having a mature conversation with them. Words have 2 assignments, build up or tear down. We get into trouble when we blast our opinions to others. We can speak truth in love but speaking an opinion without telling them it’s your opinion really confuses people. I have shared my opinion with people it didn’t help the individual. What I have learned to say is go and seek the Lord for his answer, that way I’m always pushing people to know him and not follow me. When you are down words come to your memory to build you up. “If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back.”Matthew 18:15 NLT Now let’s do action right? As We have talked about offense the Holy Spirit has been pointing out things to do so let’s do the hard things!Sometimes a conversation is needed. Sometimes a kind act toward that person makes it better. Sometimes a letter is needed. Sometimes you may only be able to verbal say I forgive you...... Let’s close the doors to the devil so he can’t steal anymore of what God is trying to give us. Offense gives the devil direct access into our life for destruction. “Sin whispers to the wicked, deep within their hearts. They have no fear of God at all.”Psalms 36:1 NLT I hope this will help you get connected to the vital healthy relationships you need again. Have enough tough skin to live a little. It’s OK to come out of hiding and live again. Life is too short to live lonely. Think about Jesus. He really had a right to be offended. He was mocked by the church. The son of God was mocked by the church! The people he helped wanted him crucified. They didn’t just say ugly things about him. They wanted him dead. He chose to forgive while they hung him on that cross. His words were offensive, they made them uncomfortable so they wanted him gone. He said, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.“ Luke 23:34 NLT The people that annoy you could be the Lord trying to prepare you for things to come. Be aware of comfortable you want to be. The kingdom of heaven doesn’t prioritize comfort. I may have talked a lot about this but I believe this is a major problem today! This separates us badly! We need each other more now than ever! As a young Pastor in training over the years I have had to share stuff that was offensive. Sometimes it was extremely personal. So I had to be sensitive to how it’s shared. I can’t control how they receive it but I can control how I share it with them. They must know first that I love them and I care deeply about them. Then I share the information in obedience to God’s speaking and releasing of the word. You can show me all your certifications and degrees but what real good do they do you when you can’t deal with simple human offenses made from error. Without love your gifts or spiritual pedigree are useless. When you know someone’s flaws and still choose to love them you are living in freedom. A doctor is a person that often has to give us bad news. Jesus is our doctor. He sends the word that we have offense built up inside and it’s killing us internally. Peace and rest can’t remain where a stronghold of offense has living rights. I challenge you to deal with offenses quickly and don’t allow them a place to live in your life. Let’s live lives of purity, holiness, integrity, full of grace, full of love, full of character, filled with strong relationships. Don’t be average. Be unoffendable. Be humble. Be real. Be genuine. Look to get better. Don’t be so emotionally driven. Know the truth about your mind and the voices you listen to. Show people that it’s worth it to live for Christ. Show Christ to others not your flesh. Seek the Holy Spirit aggressively. Confess sin daily. Repent daily. Give a eviction notice to offense and sin. Don’t be victims to offense but be overcomers through forgiveness. Don’t be like the world but change the world by the way you live!

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