When You Take Offense

We live in a time where everyone seems to have a chip on their shoulder. What offends you? Politics? Religion? Traffic? Your family? Your spouse? Your job? I would be willing to bet that every one of us is prone to being offended. The problem is, when you take offense, you build a fence. Communication and relationships are sabotaged to the point that they are often destroyed beyond repair.

I don’t want to start singing here, but “Let It Go” comes to mind. When we hold on to offenses we are giving the devil a foothold in our heart. He comes to steal, kill, and destroy. The problem is, we don’t know who the real enemy is behind the scenes. We think it is the guy in traffic that is acting like a total jerk, or the boss who demeans us in front of others. That is not the REAL problem. We have to realize where the attack is from and start taking back control of our reactions.

A few suggestions to surviving the chaos in a world gone mad:

  • Learn the art of letting go of anger. It is truly liberating when you realize that you actually have the power over your own emotions. You will live longer and have a lot less stress.
  • Don’t let other people steal your joy. Why would you let someone else push your buttons and control you? Take back that control over your responses.
  • Stay in your lane. We say this a lot at school, but it applies to all aspects of life. Mind your own business and don’t get caught up in the drama that surrounds you every day. Do you really want more drama in your life?
  • Seek to be at peace with everyone as much as possible. You don’t have to like them, but you can still be respectful. Everyone is not going to think as you think or behave as you behave. Don’t expect them to. That is absurd. Worry about the person in the mirror. That is the only person that you can really change.
  • Get in the habit of doing the right thing regardless of what other people do or say. You will have less to apologize for.
  • Think about the consequences of your words and your actions before you speak or act.
  • Forgiveness is a necessity for your own sanity. Don’t let bitterness take root and keep you from realizing the joy of life.
  • Changing how you speak, think, and act is not easy to do. Ask God to help you and put on the whole armor of God every day.

I know that some of you may be tempted to take this thought to the extreme, so let me add that I in no way suggest that you turn a blind eye to injustice or evil. That is foolish and dangerous as well. We do have to confront evil when it crosses our path. I simply suggest considering a different path to have different outcomes.

Shalom!

Daniel Skognes

6 Responses to “When You Take Offense”

  1. Cristina Andreescu says:

    So true, Dan!
    Thank you for advices, it means a world to me.

  2. Dawn Smith-Henry says:

    I’m glad you spoke about confronting evil, Dan, because I’m learning the importance of confronting–something I tend to shy away from–in order to forgive and move on. Confronting allows us to get things out in the open/clear the air so that we can release offense and truly forgive.

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