Monday, January 7, 2008

Overcoming Evil With Good

1 Peter 4:8

“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.”

A pastor of a Church called up a restaurant one night to order a pizza. He often ordered pizzas from a particular restaurant, and each time he placed an order, the clerk would ask for his phone number. He got into the habit of giving them his phone number right up front so that he could save a bit of time.

On that particular night, a woman answered the phone. The pastor politely said, “Hello, my number is 241…”

“Sir, I am not ready to take your number!” the woman snarled into the phone. “And when I get ready for your number, I will ask for your phone number!”

This pastor could hardly believe that someone working with public could be so rude! His initial instinct was to respond, “Listen, LADY! I’ll give you my number whenever I feel like it. I’ll call you with my phone number at 3 o’clock in the morning if I want to!” His mind instantly thought of ordering about 20 or 30 pizza and them to the wrong addresses. In his imagination, he could see that lady running all over town attempting to deliver the pizzas to people who hadn’t ordered them.

Fortunately, he was able to maintain his composure. He kept telling himself. “You’re a pastor of a Church, BEHAVE!”

He didn’t always do what’s right, but in this case, he made a decision that he was going to overcome evil with good. He recognized that the woman was just having a bad day; something was bothering her that had nothing to do with the phone number issue. So this pastor decided to be the solution & not the problem. He took her in a mission project, to cheer her up in all that he could do.

He began complementing her work. He said things like, “You made the best pizzas in the world. I’ve been ordering from you folks for year, and your food is wonderful. Your delivery is great; you are always on time; you’re running a 1st class operation.” On and on he went, trying to encourage her. He said, “I appreciate you being so efficient in answering the phone so quickly. And I’ll tell you, when I talk to your boss, I’m going to put it a word for you so that he would give you a raise.” By the time he got through, she not only took his phone number, she also threw in some hot chicken wings, sodas and coupons for pizza!

That’s overcoming evil with good. He didn’t know what she was dealing with at work or at home. Who knows what was going on in her personal life? But it wasn’t hard to figure out that she was having a bad day. She needed somebody to encourage her, to cheer her up, to let her know that she mattered, and to tell her that she was good at her job. That pizza was a small matter, but it was a giant opportunity for that pastor to share God’s kindness with the woman who needed it.

The Bible says in 1 Peter 4:8 that “…love covers over a multitude of sins.” That’s not always easy but love believes the best in every person. Anybody can return evil with evil, but God wants His people to help heal wounded hearts. And this is exactly what we should do in our everyday lives. And continually to love the other person just like God has loved you. Amen!

The Pastor I’m talking about is none other than Ps. Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church.This is a short passage taken out of his book called “Your Best Life Now"

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Welcome to Rhythm Praise!

rhythm |ˈriðəm|

1 the rhythm of the music beat, cadence, tempo, time, pulse, throb, swing.
2 poetic features such as rhythm meter, measure, stress, accent, cadence.
3 the rhythm of daily life pattern, flow, tempo.

"praise Him with the clash of cymbals, praise Him with resounding cymbals." - Psalm 150:5