Melvyn Tan
October 18, 2013 — By tanmelvyn@gmail.com

Do You Hold Grudges?

[blockquote source=”Proverbs 25:21-22 (NIV)“]If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the LORD will reward you.[/blockquote] Do you hold grudges? I do, at least, up until now. In fact, one of the […]

[blockquote source=”Proverbs 25:21-22 (NIV)“]If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the LORD will reward you.[/blockquote]

Do you hold grudges? I do, at least, up until now.

In fact, one of the most destructive habits of all is to hold grudges.

“I’ve had a few arguments with people, but I never carry a grudge. You know why? While you’re carrying a grudge, they’re out dancing.” – Buddy Hackett

Funny isn’t it?

I’ve come to the realization that holding a grudge does nothing to the other person who caused you pain; but it does a lot of damage for me.

First of all, why do one hold a grudge? Perhaps someone abused your trust. Or someone made an unfair comment about you behind your back.

Whatever the reason is, it is simply because your rules about how things should be were violated.

As an example, some people whom I thought were close relatives didn’t even come visit my wife during her stay at the hospital when she delivered Moses. I was upset. And the reason I was upset was because, as close relatives, I would expect that they’d be happy for us at the very least.  As a result, I held a very strong grudge against them.

Then again, those were my rules.

Those may not be their rules.

Perhaps they were just busy.

Perhaps they just could not make the time.

Perhaps they had some important business contacts in town that they had to entertain.

Perhaps they didn’t care.

But who is the one that suffers the most?

Me.

Today’s verses serve as a reminder of how we should not only manage our emotions when dealing with people who had hurt you, but also tell us how to treat them when we see them.

Would I give them a drink? Would I give them food to eat? Of course in reality, they wouldn’t need water and food from me.

But what it means is to share with them the truth. It is then up to them whether they will repent.

Some whose hearts are so hardened, that even a chisel would not make a dent.

But always believe that God’s Word can soften even the hardest of hearts.

Forgive them.

Set yourself free.

Father I pray for the emotional strength that will enable me to forgive the people who had hurt me. For on my own I would not have the moral courage. But through You, I can forgive them, like how You forgave me. In Jesus name, Amen.