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Treasure Digest: A Story of "Mine"

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Treasure Digest

A Story of "Mine"

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Many years ago, I had a job as a babysitter for a 2-year-old girl named Katie. This child had a pacifier to which she was very attached, and she kept it in her mouth almost constantly. Now pacifier is a difficult word for a 2-year-old. So when speaking of her pacifier, she simply called it "mine."

Normally Katie was a very serene, quiet, happy little girl. But every once in a while, her 7-year-old brother would tease her by taking the pacifier away from her. Then quiet little Katie would suddenly scream, "MIIIIINE! Mine! Mine! Mine!"

Why? Because she knew that pacifier was hers and she wanted it. It was not her brother's. She knew that he should not be allowed to come along and yank what was hers right out of her mouth and not give it back. It was unjust for him to do so, and Katie was not too young to feel the sting of injustice.

Children are noted for being acutely aware of whether or not they are being treated justly. But are we adults less aware? I recall my own tendency to react when another driver grabs my right-of-way. I tend to get annoyed and mutter to myself, "Hey, bud! I think I was supposed to go next!" Mine! Mine! Mine! It's so easy to react this way when we have lost something that we have called "mine."

But what is the Christian way of handling the injustice of losing what is ours? Romans 12:19 Romans 12:19Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place to wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, said the Lord.
American King James Version×
tells us that vengeance belongs to God. This is because it's easy for a person's sense of justice to be warped. A cousin of mine was murdered because another man felt property that belonged to this cousin should have been his. The man probably thought he was performing an act of justice.

In contrast, in 1 Corinthians 6:7-8 1 Corinthians 6:7-8 [7] Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because you go to law one with another. Why do you not rather take wrong? why do you not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded? [8] No, you do wrong, and defraud, and that your brothers.
American King James Version×
, Paul tells the Corinthians to be willing to allow themselves to be defrauded, and in Matthew 5:40 Matthew 5:40And if any man will sue you at the law, and take away your coat, let him have your cloak also.
American King James Version×
Jesus tells us that if our tunic is taken from us, we should also be willing to give our cloak.

Jesus Himself suffered the greatest injustice of all. He had His life unjustly taken from Him. Did He become angry about this? No, He did not, and it is His example that we are to follow. We must remember this when injustice happens to us and the fire of our resentment against it begins to burn.