How to Regain a Friend

"How could he do this, Lord? Why is he being so hateful? We don't deserve this treatment."
Betty and her husband were new to pastoring, and she was shocked to learn that a professing Christian could say such hurtful things. His negative insinuations infiltrated the whole church. Betty looked for God to visit judgment the way He took care of Ananias and Sapphira in the early church.

But God had something else in mind. "He had work to do in me before He dealt with the offender," Betty said.

She sensed Jesus saying, "Bless them that curse you" (Matt. 5:44). Her flesh responded, "You can't mean that! It goes against every fiber of my being."

She noticed that Jesus also challenged her to "do good to them that hate you."

Humbly Betty decided to attempt to obey the nudging of the Holy Spirit. It was more difficult than she expected, though. But when she finally pronounced a blessing on that man, she couldn't stop. She prayed a blessing on his wife and his family. Her prayer extended to include his job, his finances and every aspect of his life. She said, "When I rose from my knees that day, I felt clean. It was such a great feeling."

As Betty continued to pray a blessing on this man and to show kindness to him and his family, in a matter of weeks, they saw a change in his attitude. Before long their fellowship with him and his family was restored.

Dear Jesus, help us to remember that if we hold on to grudges we forfeit Your blessing.

"When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, he makes even his enemies live at peace with him" (Proverbs 16:7).

Aletha