Matthew – Fulfilled
My mom had many sayings that I can still hear in my mind. One of those was, “Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face.” Meaning: An expression used to describe a needlessly self-destructive over-reaction to a problem: “Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face” is a warning against acting out of pride, or against pursuing revenge in a way that would damage oneself more than the object of one’s anger. Mom knew that many people, including herself do this often. We are a prideful people and we think that we should never be slandered or rebuked in any way. We strike back in ways that hurt us even more.
Today’s passage reminds us that there is nothing that can’t be forgiven…BUT if we persist in slanders against the One who forgives us then we are, once again, cutting off our nose to spite our faces! Jesus says we are cutting off the branch on which we are sitting. Another phrase that comes to mind is “biting the Hand that feeds us.”
Let us not be careless with our words. Jesus says those words will come back to haunt us. (And they do, I can testify to that!) There WILL be a time of reckoning. Words are powerful. Words can be our salvation or our damnation. Repent now. I am.
Matthew 12, The Message
31-32 “There’s nothing done or said that can’t be forgiven. But if you deliberately persist in your slanders against God’s Spirit, you are repudiating the very One who forgives. If you reject the Son of Man out of some misunderstanding, the Holy Spirit can forgive you, but when you reject the Holy Spirit, you’re sawing off the branch on which you’re sitting, severing by your own perversity all connection with the One who forgives.
33 “If you grow a healthy tree, you’ll pick healthy fruit. If you grow a diseased tree, you’ll pick worm-eaten fruit. The fruit tells you about the tree.
34-37 “You have minds like a snake pit! How do you suppose what you say is worth anything when you are so foul-minded? It’s your heart, not the dictionary, that gives meaning to your words. A good person produces good deeds and words season after season. An evil person is a blight on the orchard. Let me tell you something: Every one of these careless words is going to come back to haunt you. There will be a time of Reckoning. Words are powerful; take them seriously. Words can be your salvation. Words can also be your damnation.”
Dear Heavenly Father,
I repent of saying stupid stuff for all the wrong motivations of my heart. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit and help us to grow to be more and more like You and less and less like human, worldly selves. I love you with all that is in me. Thank you for your complete forgiveness. Help me to forgive myself so I won’t be cutting off my nose to spite my face. In Jesus Name, Amen