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Don’t gloat

Don’t gloat when your enemies fail.

This one is so hard. Yet, it’s in the Bible. When people are nasty, unloving, cruel, conceited and so on, it’s hard not to be happy when they fail. In fact, how you respond when they fail shows you if you love them or not. I don’t mean a group, orginization, or even government, that has wronged you failing and you being happy or relieved, I’m sure every person in the Allied Forces was thrilled to tears when enemy finally fell, there’s nothing wrong with that. I mean how we feel when an ondividual person fails. Do we smile? Do we cheer? Are we annoyed when they succeed? Then we don’t really love them.
I felt that recently when someone I have had trouble with in the past failed, I smiled and was glad. Then I felt rebuked (justly) by God for the next several hours. I knew ot was wrong to feel glad about that and now I see that I truly have problematic feelings toward that person that I need to deal with. But we all have someone we feel this way about from time to time. Some people we have to fight with ourselves to love every time we hear their name. Some people are hard to even tollerate. If Jesus didn’t tell us to love our enemies I’m positive we wouldn’t bother. But He knew that we needed to be different from the crowd.
This makes me think of a time when I was out walking my dog. We came across another dog and it started barking and snarling and flipping out at my dog, my dog started barking and snarling and flipping out in turn. I got down, put my hands on his back and said “be the bigger dog bud.” To my shock my dog turned around, looked at me and woofed. Everything in his face said ‘why should I be the bigger dog? he started it.’ Now I’m sure my dog didn’t understand what I had said, but he would have understood the corrective hand and my tone of voice and could have very easily felt like he shouldn’t be the one who needed to give in. How often does God have to pull back on our leads and tell us to be the better person? How often do we argue His words? How often do we ignore them out right?
Don’t gloat or say ‘I told you so’ when someone you can’t stand fails. No matter how much you want to. Because God will be pleased if you don’t and pleasing Him is what matters.

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