Jesus, who was perfect, could not please everyone all the time. In fact, He pretty much annoyed everyone all the time. He pulled off this annoyance without a shred of sin.
If Jesus, who was perfect, was able to annoy so many people, what chance do we have to not annoy people?! In fact, if you are not annoying people, is it because you are conforming to worldliness too much?!
Even if we managed to annoy people apart from our sin–for instance, we annoyed others by speaking God’s Word–no doubt our response and defense would involve sin as our competitive I’m-right-you’re-wrong side takes over.
It has been a learning process in my own life to experience how little of a benefit of a doubt I am granted at any given time. Never mind I have endeavored to help, to speak truth, to be nice, to hold back much of what I desire to say, and have in many other ways limited the potential for my sin, at one slip-up, I will be pounced on.
I do not say this as a victim or as an oddity, this is life. Although I may have done all I could for you, helped you and been of benefit to you for years, if I say one thing that slightly puts you off–BOOM!–that’s it! Jeff is heretic scum!
It is for this reason, along with others, that I am glad the final judgment will not take place in front of a jury of my peers. I will be judged by God and I am so relieved at this. I at least know God is gracious, merciful and willing to forgive, unlike pretty much everyone else I’ve ever met, including myself.
I will gladly say with David, “let us fall now into the hand of the Lord; for his mercies are great: and let me not fall into the hand of man.”
As we progress in denying ourselves and being transformed into the image of Christ, let us grow in our mercy toward one another. Give each other the benefit of the doubt, don’t automatically interpret everything in the worst possible way. Take the whole context, including your entire relationship into account before blowing someone off.
Oh for the day when we will live surrounded by righteousness where no one will need to be taught for we will all know the Lord and knowing Him will eliminate all selfishness!