Justice (Bible Tag 11)

#52slowstitchbibletags justice

There is nothing more important to me in life than truth. An injustice happened to me recently caused by lies. I lost all the funds I put into an account for 23 years for my retirement. I fought a year-long legal battle, and I lost; I was in the right and sure I would get the right outcome. I'm ashamed to say I fell apart, not just a little, I had a full-blown melt down. I'm still healing from it and suffering the consequences of my break down. I had do a lot of apologizing. 

I didn't fall apart over the loss but the injustice and no one understood when I tried to explain how it felt. When we are treated wrongly or wrongfully accused we must wait for God's deliverance and vindication. I didn't. I had a huge pity party, 

Being wronged is a traumatic experience. I'm sure many of you have had similar experiences. But none of us have experienced it to the same extent as Joseph. God has given us this type of biography so that we can learn the truth about him and life, and so it will encourage us to persevere, motivate us, and make us aware of evils and temptations.

The story of Joseph in Genesis occupies one-fourth of Genesis, it is longer than Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, or even Jacob. His life is fascinating and full of injustice. Joseph was mistreated by his brothers. Even though his intentions to find out how they were doing were honorable and sincere, he was mistreated and sold as a slave into Egypt. Mrs Potiphar mistreated Joseph. Again, despite his honorable and sincere actions, he was falsely accused of attempted rape. This resulted in the loss of his job and a sentence in prison, where, Joseph was mistreated even more, being forgotten by someone he had helped in prison.

Despite his mistreatment, Joseph is never described as angry, depressed, bitter, rebellious against God, or self-pitying. Yet again, Joseph exemplifies supreme Christ-likeness, leaving us to wonder if the cycle will ever end. The cycle is clearly intended to depict his life's theme of "God is sovereign - what others intend for evil, God can use for good to achieve his purposes." 

Why Did I React so Poorly?

I'm in the Word for hours daily. I have studied many stories of injustice and how each person of God reacted. I've written several lessons on Joseph. I know I should not allow the injustice and mistreatment of a situation to control my emotions. I know not to let "a root of bitterness to spring up and cause trouble, and many become defiled as a result" (Heb. 12:15). I know there are times I may not be able to change my circumstances, but I know I can change how I react to them. I know it is easy to let hurt turn into unchecked rage. But I also know God wants us to keep our emotions in check by not falling into reproach and the devil's snare. (1 Tim. 3:7). If I know all this, why did I fall apart and into a deep depression?

After a lot of prayer, I realized I was holding on to bitterness from several injustices in my life and this one put me over the top. If I given each of those situations to God fully, I would not have been so upset when this new injustice happened.

I'm reading a book that is helping me deal with my past. "When You Don't Like Your Story: What If Your Worst Chapters Could Become Your Greatest Victories?

Mistakes, failures, tragedies, and circumstances beyond our control haunt us and hold us back. How do we deal with the parts of our stories that we wish didn't exist? How do we silence the pain of what has been done to us, as well as the shame?

Sharon Jaynes shows us how God untangles our most painful emotions with the fingers of grace, putting his redemption on display.  In the hardest parts of our story (life), we get to see God's greatest work--and this changes the ending of our stories.  As we overcome shame, offer forgiveness, and use our stories to help others, we find freedom from the past and learn to live in the restoration of the present.

Paul said, Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.(Ephesians 4:31).

Pikria, which means "bitterness or harshness," is the Greek word for bitterness it conveys a bitter or resentful spirit. The root word pik sounds similar to what it means: to pick, prick, or cut. It can refer to a sharp or pointed object, or it can refer to a bitter, sharp taste. It refers to "that angry and resentful state of mind that can develop when we face difficulties."

We will become bitter if we continue to pick at the scab of past pain, refusing to allow the wound to heal. And bitterness breeds other negative emotions and behaviors. Consider the words Paul associated with bitterness: rage, anger, brawling, slander, and malice. Bitter fruit will grow from a bitter root. It has no other option. 

I'm a work in progress. God has a plan for each of us—a specific plan that, when we walk in union with him, following his way, we swim happily through the river of life; but when we are outside of his plan we are like a fish out of water, flopping all over the place. I thought I was walking in God's ways but I was holding on to bitterness.

I'm so sorry for my reaction.God forgives me and I know He does not want to simply console me through this injustice. He wants to heal me from the history of pain from previous injustices. Now I am turning to Him for that healing. 

Bible Tag Prompt

Stitch a verse on justice this week and include French knots. 

Helpful Links

My Week 10 Tag

All Bible Tag Prompts to Date

  1. Week 1. Love, heart
  2. Week 2. Strength, lace
  3. Week 3. Grace, denim
  4. Week 4. Faith, flower
  5. Week 5. Hope, five fabrics
  6. Week 6. Holy, button
  7. Week 7. Promise, rainbow
  8. Week 8. Shema, yoyo
  9. Week 9. Protection, seed stitching
  10. Week 10. Light, couching


Video Credit

The Bible Project videos are added to enhance the lessons and used with permission. Bible project offers these videos free on Youtube and at BibleProject.com