Jesus came to give you life. Not just any old life but a happy, fulfilling and rewarding life. In contrast, the devil seeks to steal, kill and destroy the very life that Jesus came to give.
The enemy has a whole host of weapons that he uses to steal from you. One of his most trusted tools is offence.
It’s a given
Jesus promised that offences will come. Indeed, the opportunity to be offended probably knocks at each one of our doors on a daily basis.
But offence is not just common. It is dangerous. In the parable of the sower, Jesus said that offence causes God’s people to fall. Satan wants to steal your life and he sends offence to do his dirty work.
We all need this
Can I ask a favour here? Please don’t assume that you don’t get offended. It’s one of the enemy’s best ways of keeping you and me bound. Instead, right now, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal any offence in your heart.
Proverbs 18:19 says that a person who is offended is harder to win over than a fortified city. So if it’s going to be tough for my brother or sister to help me when I’m offended, I need to learn to spot it in myself!
Whoops – that sounds like me!
Offence means to feel indignant, resentful, irritated, annoyed, upset. Wow. That in itself is a revelation. So any time I am irritated with someone, I am actually offended.
If I feel indignant about the way someone treated me or if I am annoyed or cross, in reality, I am offended.
Describing what we are like when we are offended, Mark 4:16-17 says:
“They…have no real root in themselves, and so… when trouble… arises… they immediately are offended (become displeased, indignant, resentful) and they stumble and fall away.”
There are 2 lessons we can learn from these verses:
1) If we want to know whether we are easily offended, we must consider our reactions and behaviour when we are facing trouble. And most trouble comes in human form! Who is the one person that winds you up far too easily. That’s trouble!
2) Also, notice the words Jesus used at the very start of this passage. According to the Bible, if I get easily upset or irritated (or offended!), it is because I have “no real root”.
What root is Jesus talking about? Well, Ephesians 3:17 tells us to be rooted and grounded in love. So any time I am offended, it means I am lacking in love. That hurt me because I long to carry more of His love.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7 gives us a powerful checklist of what love looks like. Think about a time recently when someone wound you up. Have you got a memory in mind?
Now let me share my offence test with you. If love is the antidote to offence then I will know if I’ve become offended by answering these questions:
My Offence Test
- Was I Patient?
- Was I Kind?
- Did I Believe the Best?
- Was I Irritated?
- Was I Demanding?
- Was I Rude?
- Did I Overlook Their Wrong?
Let’s ask the Lord to fill us afresh with His love. If I have more kindness, more patience, if I believe the best and if I am quick to forgive, satan will find it harder to steal the life Jesus came to give me.
If you want to grow, I encourage you to read 30 Day Detox for your Soul. It’s got days dedicated to both offence and love. And come along to Healed for Life. Until you come, you will never understand the depth of what God will do.