At a dinner party the other night we started discussing an upcoming open house we are all invited to honoring a recent marriage. Someone teasingly asked if they were on the A list or the B list for the party. My, what an uproar ensued!
The hosts of the party were there (good, long time friends) and quickly explained that due to their limited facilities they staggered the start time of the party in their invitation. Of course we began arguing in fun over who got the more favored time slot.
On the way home I got to thinking seriously about offense. Such a small detail as the time on an invitation is not always a joking matter. People have not spoken to each other for years based on much less. Once offense has occurred it is very difficult to undo. Proverbs 18:19 says correctly that: “A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city.”
Watch closely what offends you. Realize that it isn’t so much what the other party did as it is how you react to it. Close examination will reveal some flesh is most generally at the root of every offense. The solution is a hard but worthwhile one: dealing with our stinky self. “For if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live” (Romans 8:13).
Not fun, but that’s what the Lord invites us to. Say, you want to be on God’s “A” list, don’t you?