How do we respond when faced with personal challenges? When we're hurt and confused by conflict and selfish behavior how do we react? Most of us would consider responding in kind. We might even believe that we'd enjoy giving them back what they've dished out. We might even think that they deserve whatever's coming their way. After all, it was their poor decisions that have landed them in this situation in the first place.
Most of us would respond with anger and accusations when confronted with betrayal and poor choices. Most of us wouldn't care about the reasons, but would focus upon the results of their decisions upon us. Most of us would run straight into that assumption, head first into the fear arena. Fear of what's next. Fear of the repercussions. Fear of the dark days ahead, because we always assume there will be dark days.
Most of us would react without thinking, let alone considering God's option. Instead of responding harshly, choose to go to God. Instead of just reacting, reach out to God. Instead of ... any of the other millions of bad ideas that takes up residence in your mind, take it all to God first. 'Father, you're going to have to take this anger and fear from me, because I can't do it on my own.' Guess what? God can (and does) and will (and does) remove what we might consider a typical response and replaces it with peace.
Someone else's bad behavior doesn't mean you have to respond with your own bad behavior. Be atypical and respond with love. Be the one who chooses God's love.
1 John 4:17-18 MSG
"God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day—our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love."