Lesson 6 -- second quarter 1999
April 11, 1999
© Copyright 1999, Christian Light Publications
Do you believe that Jesus rose from the dead? Do you accept the truth of the Resurrection as unchallengeable fact? Then Jesus was talking about you when He told Thomas, "Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed"! Do you feel blessed?
I suspect that most people who answer that question answer it in the negative. And maybe you are one of those. I am. Most of the time, I do not feel blessed. In fact, as I sit here and poke at this keyboard, I am stumped by this question: What does it feel like to feel blessed? Thankfully, blessedness is an issue of fact primarily...perhaps even mostly. And the fact remains that those who believe by faith enjoy strength, confidence, stability and assurance.
I believe we can understand this truth easily enough as we consider our relationship to Jesus and our belief in Him. But I wonder if this same principle can benefit our relationships with other people.
Obviously there are many aspects of our interpersonal relationships where believing without visible evidence is unwise. For example, do not believe everything you hear about people and situations. However, wouldn't our relationships be strengthened if in other cases we would choose belief without evidence?
No doubt we have all experienced something like the following. A certain person does or says something which strikes us clear wrong. Let's just say So-n-So stands up during testimony time and in the midst of the ensuing words appears this comment: "I want to be a good example of the believer the way the Bible enjoins us." Then may come these thoughts (either directly into your head or indirectly via another's tongue): "Hmm. Wants to show us the way, uh? Wants us to follow, eh? I wonder if (s)he ever considered what the Bible says about thinking of yourself too highly!" Or perhaps someone does something which so obviously seems intended to slight you or put you down.
What will you do in either of such cases?
You could choose to believe the best and just not worry about the matter. On the other hand, you could be bothered enough that you go to talk with the individual. And you actually tell So-n-So what you think he or she meant with the action or words. What will you do if the accused proclaims innocence?
We need to encourage ourselves to believe people even when we think we have figured out what they really meant. Give them the benefit of the doubt. We must somehow get ourselves beyond the arrogance of thinking we have an inside line on what people think and what motivates them. This, I believe, is one aspect of the power of the Resurrection in the life of the Redeemed.
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