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Air Out Your Soul – Things to Consider Before Taking Revenge

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revenge, anger

Vernassa, Italy
Copyright: Lisa@TheWarmingHouse

Has anyone ever done something that left you with ragged wounds? I’m talking about the drop you to your knees, impossible to comprehend damage that makes you wonder if you’ll ever recover – even with God’s help?

I’ve been there – more than I’d like to admit. Here’s one example.

Several years ago, my husband and I were defrauded by a close friend. A huge amount of money was involved. Our initial desire was for those funds to be used to help the suffering, poor, diseased, hungry, hurting, and lost. With the deception, we grieved deeply over the lost opportunities to help many people. In reality, we hadn’t been robbed. They had. It hurt for a very long time.

A powerful attorney who specialized in our type of case felt we had a very good chance of getting our money back in a court of law.

In the end, we decided not to pursue the lawsuit. Why?

  • We knew this person would fight dirty. We didn’t want to be tempted to do the same and become people who barely resembled Jesus.

“In taking revenge, a man is but even with his enemy; but in passing it over, he is superior.” Francis Bacon

  • The case could potentially take years. A waste of life. A wise friend counseled us to move on and use that time and money to invest ourselves in positive things instead.

“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21

  • We prayed a ton and searched the Bible to see how God would want us to respond.
  • We had to check our hearts. Would we be acting from a place of hatred and anger seeking revenge? What were our motivations?

“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.” – Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

God led us to respond differently. We broke our relationship with this person, removed our support from his organization, shared pertinent information with the attorney general in our state, then moved on.

It wasn’t easy. I struggled with hateful feeings. I can remember praying as I washed dishes at my sink one day.

“God, bring your swift sword of destruction against this man for what he’s done.” We had decided not to “take him down” so I wanted God to.

Immediately, these words came into my mind.

“Lisa, I sent my son to die for your sins and mistakes. (Immediately, my past mistakes paraded through my mind. Ugly. Very, very ugly.) He saved you from my swift sword of destruction. How can you ask me to punish this man when you’ve gotten off scot free?”

Stopped me cold. God’s gentle heart meeting mine.

I want his heart to beat in my chest, his mind to think my thoughts, his words to flow from my mouth, his love and mercy to seep out of me.

Never to be a prisoner of my own hate and bitterness. Always to be free in the healing that comes from a close relationship with him.

If you’re struggling with feelings of revenge, here are some scripture verses straight from the heart of God.

revenge anger

These are words of life . . . living . . . airing out your soul. Follow them and they will lead you to abundant living. I promise.

Nursing hurts, wanting revenge, waiting for God to inflict consequences on someone who has wronged you, and sinking into bitterness gives Satan a foothold. He destroys you from the inside out. You won’t even know what hit you.

“When you begin a journey of revenge, start by digging two graves: one for your enemy, and one for yourself.” – Jodi Picoult, Nineteen Minutes

God has greater things for you. Trust him.

He has definitely healed our hearts as we live the Christian life. We have spent the last three years nurturing our kids, enjoying their college years, starting a ministry, writing a blog to minister to others, studying at a biblical institute, traveling, and living life. So much better than how things could have been!

God is so wise – and oh so good.

Do you struggle with feelings of anger and revenge? How have you overcome them?

Thanks for being here today. I really love your presence here. I mean that. Sincerely. Let me know if you’d like me to pray for you for any reason.

Related link:

Praying Effective Prayers #2 (Delight Yourself in the Lord)

Until next time . . . I’ll leave the light on for you.


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  1. June McDonald says:

    We have all be there, in that dark, secret place where we are willing to give up our right to get revenge if only God will do it for us, Sometimes looking at the ugliness within our soul is a wonderful journey to something new and wonderful, a deeper relationship with God based on our better understanding of who He is. Reminds me of all the things that Jesus must have felt on that last walk into Jerusulem.

  2. LMB says:

    Beautifully said, June. 🙂

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