3 Ways to Protect Your Heart from Offense

In our politically correct culture, offense is the name of the game. We get offended over every little thing. And I mean every. little. thing. But should offense be a part of the Christian life? The truth is that the Bible calls us to forgive the way Jesus forgave us. That means always and for everything. So if we’re being honest with ourselves, being offended is the exact opposite of that command.

 

3 Ways to Protect Your Heart from Offense | alyssajhoward.com

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Recognize that offense stems from pride.

They say that the first step to overcoming a struggle in your life is to admit you have a problem. While many of us might point to the offending party as the problem, the REAL problem is our own personal pride. Truth be told, most people have no clue they offended us in the first place. So while we’re sitting around all hurt and bent out of shape, they’ve already moved on with their lives… happy and content. But let’s assume that they fully intended to hurt and offend you… wouldn’t it be wise NOT to get offended? Wouldn’t that speak volumes? In humility, we should let it go. Because in the end, choosing not to get offended makes us stronger.

 

Remember Who your defender is.

God is our defender. He is just and works on our behalf as His children. When we get offended, it’s easy to think that by letting go, we are somehow letting the offender off the hook. But that’s not how our defender works! God is working in each and every one of our hearts. He meets us where we are at, and deals with every dark corner of our lives… one corner at a time. Don’t you think He could work on your behalf? Don’t you believe He can change a person’s heart in an instant? Allow Him to do what He does best, surrender the offender to Him and worry about your own heart by choosing forgiveness.

Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will grant you his blessing. – 1 Peter 3:9 (NLT)

 

Choosing not to be offended protects not only your heart… but your relationship with God.

The Bible is clear on many occasions that we are called to forgive as Christ forgave us. We can’t expect to be in right relationship with God if we have bitterness and offense in our hearts. Not only that, but bitterness tends to grow. The longer we allow it to live in our hearts, the harder it is to abandon.

See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. – Hebrews 12:15

 

Offense is useless and ruins lives. I’ve seen far too many people in my life hurt and damaged due to the effects of offense. And ultimately, it’s usually the one being offended who ends up with most baggage.

We avoid certain people and places because we have allowed the hurt to take a hold of our hearts. How can we expect to accomplish our God-given destinies if we’re unwilling to let go past hurts?

 

It is important to protect your heart from offense because in doing so you are protecting your God-given destiny.

 

Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will grant you his blessing. - 1 Peter 3:9 | alyssajhoward.com

 

*Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.

**Photo by Brigitte Tohm on Unsplash


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6 Comments

  1. Thank you so much for the message I truly needed to have this put in my heart. I realised I was living with offense in my heart and began searching for scriptures that I needed to help me. I was lead to your page. You broke it down perfectly and made it very clear so very helpful.
    Barbara Rodriguez

  2. Thank you after searching scripture on offense I was led to this page. Iv noticed offense creeping into me more and more with the same person. Thankyou that I am now thinking with my heart and not my Ego

    1. I’m so glad I found this page. Thank you Jesus! Much like Julue, I have been struggling with feelings of offence towards one person wich peaked after an incident last week. I had been prayerful regarding the hardening of my heart ,which was becoming palpable to me, and was waiting for my breakthrough. Here it is. I feel unburdened, strengthened and empowered this Easter Sunday morning. May God bless you my dear. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  3. I do wonder why it is always the offended person who receives so much condemnation? Why do we not spend at least as much time teaching people not to offend? I notice in church circles, when someone leaves because they were treated poorly, immediately they are despised as someone that is easily offended. Why do we never look beyond that, and condemn the act of mistreatment, and teach leaders to be kind and fair?

  4. This help me so much. GoD began to show me I have been allowing the spirit of offense to operate in my life. Which stemmed from pride, selfishness. Which cause me to be aggressive, hostile, unfriendly, angry, bitter , annoyed. I also saw I had malice. Those things are not the spirit of God. Love does not get easily provoked. But I am choosing to repent to turn from my ways and fight for my life. My true desire is to make it into Heaven and I must be clean from all wickedness.

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