DayBreaks for 2/16/17: Rats in the Cellar and Slaps on the Cheek
Matthew 5:39 (ESV) – But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.
This text from Matthew leads one to ponder the words of C.S. Lewis, Surely what a man does when he is taken off his guard is the best evidence for what sort of man he is. If there are rats in a cellar, you are most likely to see them if you go in very suddenly. But the suddenness does not create the rats; it only prevents them from hiding. In the same way, the suddenness of the provocation does not make me ill-tempered; it only shows me what an ill-tempered man I am.“
Think about the reaction that Christ calls us to have if someone strikes us on the cheek. What kind of a person would that make us? To turn the other cheek and refuse to react with similar anger or malice shows the world we are Christian. After all, if someone walked up to you in the next 5 minutes without warning or provocation and slapped you hard across the cheek, what would your reaction be?
So if what we do when we are taken off guard is the best evidence of what sort of person we are, let us pray our reactions show that we are good Christians!
PRAYER: Lord, it is not natural for us to turn the other cheek when we’ve been smitten physically, verbally or emotionally. It is at moments like that when we most need your Spirit to dominate our response. Spirit, take up residence in us so that we might be like Jesus! In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
Copyright 2017 by Galen Dalrymple.