Recycle Revenge

Have you heard the new Coldplay record?
You really should, it’s absolutely beautiful.
And there’s this line towards the end of
the record where Chris Martin exclaims,
“I don’t want to cycle and recycle revenge,
I don’t want to follow death and all of his friends….”

And a line like that will get you thinking.
Coupled with the fact that I just got done leading a small group
all week at a middle school camp in NJ, it’s got me thinking.
We dealt a lot with the idea of returning evil with good,
meanness with kindness, hatred with love.
In middle school terms,
we likened grace to buying a soda for someone who calls you names;
treating someone better than they deserve.
Or to put it in grown up terms, absorbing more pain than I inflict.”

As Christians, we are called to break the cycle of revenge.
More so than any other group of people, because we see that that is
exactly what Christ has done for us.
In the middle of his suffering under the weight of our sins’ judgment,
He cries, “forgive them Father for they know not what they do.”
Man oh man, most of the time that seems like
the greatest impossibility that I could imagine.

To be a willing door mat to those who take advantage?
To treat those who would never treat me?
To buy a soda for the bully who takes my lunch money?
To wash Judas’ feet?

Coldplay and Jesus are reminding me of my privilege of a Christian today.
The privilege to forgive.
The privilege to show grace.
The privilege to break the cycle of revenge.
I don’t want to believe the lie today that
being bitter towards those who have wronged me will change things.
I don’t want to believe the lie that I need to show people how they’ve
hurt my feelings. I don’t want to believe the lie that
a prison of being offended is better than the freedom of forgiveness.
I don’t want to cycle and recycle revenge.
I don’t want to follow death and all of his friends.
God give us grace to give grace.

Ephesians 4:32
“Be kind one to another, tenderhearted forgiving one another,
even as God, for Christ’s sake has forgiven you.”