Am I willing to not fight back when wronged and instead trust God to bring justice?
38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ 39 But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. - Matthew 5:38-42
This teaching is very special to me, because it is the first teaching of Christ that God intentionally challenged me to obey after the divorce started. God was asking me (as He asks all of us) not to fight back, but to turn the other cheek and to allow myself to be wronged or cheated. At first it seemed too radical to me because so much was on the line with my children and my financial future. I kept praying about it and He gave me a major confirmation. Then one morning I heard these words, “Fire your attorney and trust me to defend you. I will do this in a highly unusual way that will bring me much glory.” My position was to trust Him, allow myself to be wronged, and to forgive my ex-wife along the way. What God did in that divorce was so extraordinary, that it continues to bless me and others, still today.
A 21-year-old girl saw my story and reached out to me with some questions about her faith. Soon, her mom reached out as well. I replied with voice recordings and as they listened, someone else was secretly listening too. Her 12-year-old brother came in and said, “I want to talk to that man about God…can you ask him if he will talk to me.” The sister was shocked because he had never been interested in hearing her talk about God (John 4:44). She was reluctant to ask me for my time because she had no idea what he wanted to ask me. I told her I’d be honored to speak with him. He called me right away, and in a sad voice said, “What advice can you give me about my dad going to court to try to take away my visitation with my mom?” My heart was broken, and I wanted so badly to take away his pain. I couldn’t dare tell him that he was calling a dad, who hadn’t seen his own five children in almost two years, because of parental alienation.
So, I asked him if He wanted God’s presence and help in his life as he grows up? He said he did, so I told him the importance of obeying Jesus. I told him about trusting God alone to help him and about the need to be willing to be wronged, rather than fighting back (Ps 37:7-13). At the end of our talk we prayed. As I choked back tears, I pleaded with God to show this young man that He loved him and that he could trust Him. We prayed for his dad and asked God to change his heart and to bless him.
Two weeks later I received a, “you’re not going to believe this” email from his sister. Through prayer and faith alone, his dad had changed his mind and was not going to take him from his mom anymore. The young man was greatly impacted to see God’s faithfulness after he trusted Him.
If you can avoid evil people, do so (Mt 10:23), but sometimes you cannot. In those times, we are to demonstrate total trust in God and His timing. Remember, it is not His desire to see us crushed without resurrection (Isa 53:10-11), but it is His desire to see us learn obedience through suffering, and to glorify Himself. A person who is willing to be wronged or cheated, for the sake of trusting God, provides one of the most powerful proofs of God in the entire world. God promises to use the evil as a blessing in your life, if you respond properly. (Pro 16:4, Rom 8:28)