Strange title—yes, I agree. Can we even imagine doing so? And yet, I believe that we do toss tomatoes in our Savior’s direction, more often than we realize. You may wonder how I could write such insulting dribble. Let’s investigate the possibility that this could be a true statement. If we envision ourselves aiming tomatoes at Jesus—and how absurd that is—maybe we can prevent more of the same.
A man’s discretion makes him slow to anger, And it is his glory to pass over a transgression. Proverbs 19:11 NAS
When situations arise, our reaction requires a Christ-like response. (In reality, if we are Christ-followers, we always need to offer a Christ-like attitude, but that need not be said. Right?) The challenge begins when we reason that no one understands how hard and painful and trying this experience feels—thinking that way may not work out for our best interest. Or benefit others. When considering how impossible this person or group of people are, and mixing present and past hurts—well that may hamper the best blessings from gracing our lives. Making the trial rather valueless, at best.
Experience can be a terrific teacher—if one submits to their relationship with the Father. Forgiveness matters—very much—and how good it is for us to inspect just what we are holding on to. Baggage? A rock? An open hand of friendship, or a tomato? The choice is ours. Remember, blessings multiply on all who’s will is bent to receive, when focused on His direction, correction, and joyful overcoming!
Abide in Me, and I in you. As a branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. John 15:4 NAS
So, when we pass that incorrigible teen with manners that rate in the negative, or an entitled person who feels they are royalty and you are…swamp scum, what will it be?
So, when we pass that incorrigible teen with manners that rate in the negative, or an entitled person who feels they are royalty and you are…swamp scum, what will it be? Shall we cave in to the first reaction that rears up and wants power over our attention? And theirs, no matter how negative? Or shall we leave vengeance and the lesser-degree disciplines in the capable hands of the WONDERFUL COUNSELOR our Immanuel? I’m not saying that justice should be erased, I’m referring to petty slights, rejections, or verbal attacks which have the power to pull us into darkness and isolation by the weight of unforgiveness. I know, it can be tough for a second, a week, or unfortunately longer…but lack of sleep, high blood pressure, and anxiety really don’t equate to time on the beach. The pure action of releasing one’s grip on ugly thoughts and attitudes releases the fragrant beauty of Heaven on earth. Really tough choice? It’s okay, put down the tomatoes and take hold of the hand of our blessed Savior . . . and abide ASAP!
Precious Jesus, thank you for paying for all of our sins by your death on the cross. Help us to remember it wasn’t just our sins you forgave and that to disregard your payment for our offender’s sins would be like tossing tomatoes at your precious sacrifice. May your peace and grace abound in and through us—even to those who offend us. Amen.
Writing devotions puts me in our Father's presence. My heart, mind, and spirit are focused on Him.