I’m a sweet girl. How can she hate me?
Debra heaped jealous anger on me after handing in her resignation. As an inexperienced director, I shrank lower in my chair, hurt by the accusations. Debra wanted degrees she didn’t have, opportunities for which she was not prepared, favoritism I could not give.
I spent an hour giving her my best defense. Yet, the more I explained my decisions, the more she leaned forward to point out flaws in my leadership. Her mind was set. Her heart was closed.
For two weeks afterwards, I replayed old conversations, looking for the truth in Debra’s words. I re-examined decisions, soul-searched for bias, and said “yes” to any request or idea. In the end, the only thing I accomplished was distracted, unproductive work and confused stares from peers that begged the question, “What is the matter with you?”
Thank heavens for the friend and mentor who finally pulled me aside and said, “People will not always like you or agree with you. And when they’re determined to prove a point, it’s pointless to try proving yours.”
The mentor knew Jesus, who wasted no time with such fruitless debates.
Although he faced persecution and death in Jerusalem, the Son of God “…steadfastly set his face to go…” (Luke 9:51, NKJV)
His journey took him through a village of Samaritans. Because of animosity between Jews and Samaritans, the village refused to welcome him.
Angry with the rejection and treatment of their Master, Christ’s’ disciples wanted to retaliate, calling down fire to consume the villagers. But Jesus rebuked them. He focused forward on the end in mind.
Neither angry nor sidetracked by those who refused to hear the love in his words, Jesus moved on. He continued his journey to what God called him to do. To where God called him to go.
My lesson learned … Challengers and detractors will always be with us. Once we set our face to follow Christ’s lead, the best defense of oneself is no defense at all. Just steadfastly continue the journey.
In any case, I must keep going today, tomorrow, and the next day…(Luke 13:33, NIV)
©2014 Gloria Ashby. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail.