Why is it? The pettiest perceived offenses can quickly become overwhelming in our minds. Honestly, I do not know how many times I have allowed myself to be devastated by what I was convinced were deliberate, specific personal slights. Not being selected for a team or a position or any type of reward or recognition. It’s upsetting.
Thanks to the willingness of loved ones to direct my attention to this tendency in me, and realizing the root of the problem was actually covetousness, I repented and sought the LORD to guide me in renewing my heart and mind. Now, although these emotions may still rise up, I can usually take them captive quickly and not allow them to take root.
As Paul continues to minister to the believers in Corinth, he expresses concern that they continue to suffer from a lack of repentance. This is not just a personal idiosyncrasy of Paul’s. He knows that unrepentance brings with it consequences that are not healthy, enjoyable, or peaceful. It is a principle of the Kingdom that unrepentance reaps bitter fruit.
“For I fear lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I wish, and [that] I shall be found by you such as you do not wish; lest [there be] contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, backbitings, whisperings, conceits, tumults; lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and I shall mourn for many who have sinned before and have not repented of the uncleanness, fornication, and lewdness which they have practiced.”
(2 Corinthians 12:20-21, NKJV)
We must always be on guard against these weaknesses of the flesh. Our human nature will always want to indulge these sinful behaviors, and our culture tells us it is normal and there is no need to repent.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God; renew in me a resolute spirit.”
(Psalm 51:10, CJB)