Yesterday I saw rage in my own heart.
My family and I were at my children's karate class. As the kids were waiting in line to practice some kicking moves, my son Gabriel, who is autistic, was showing the girl in front of him what it's like for a duck to quack. The girl's father mistook that as Gabriel spitting on her. He said to my wife in a rude way, "You wanna keep your son in check? He's spittin' on my daughter! That's rude!". My wife spoke with Gabriel. I didn't hear the rest of the conversation, but she apologized to the man, mentioning that Gabriel is autistic and he doesn't know any better. "Apparently not!", the man said.
I had Gabriel go and apologize to the little girl, and the man said "Look he's doing it again!". My wife and the man's wife told him correctly that Gabe was just apologizing. "Oh," the man said.
I was already upset with the guy. But on our way home, my wife was in tears. This made me want to literally beat the guy to a bloody pulp.
But, praise be to God, the God of all mercy, that I spoke with one of my brothers in the Lord on the phone about this today. This brother, before the Lord saved him, used to get in fights a lot and even did underground fights.
"I don't fight anymore," my friend told me.
"But when is it OK to fight as Christians?", I asked. "When someone is physically attacking you or your family," my friend replied.
"But he verbally abused my wife!", I mentioned. But my friend quickly and rightly responded that I was idolizing my wife. Furthermore, he pointed out that the Lord Jesus was reviled and despised of men. He was called names, and even spat upon.
Our Lord never retaliated. He turned the other cheek.
That man will be there probably during the next time my kids have karate. Nothing needs to be done or said. What do I do if he speaks rudely again? I tell him that we are adults, and that being rude is not becoming of us.
If he wants to fight, I tell him that we are not in high school, and that I don't fight.
A DOSE OF MY OWN MEDICINE
You see, I had been spending all this time mortifying only a few sins in my life, putting all my energy in killing them particularly. But my friend gave me a good analogy. What would happen if a military at war spent all their power with their front flank only? They would get attacked from the rear. That is why they have rear guard as well. They protect themselves on all sides.
This is how we must mortify sin. If we only battle a few sins, the flesh and the enemy will attack us in other sins.
Indeed, we must kill all sins. We are at war.
Yesterday, I saw rage in my heart that I thought was never there. I got a dose of my own medicine.
All praises to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.