The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression. – Proverbs 19:11
With our family of five working together, playing together, and home-schooling together, all the togetherness can feel a bit oppressive at times. I imagine you can relate!
Never have I felt more fortunate that we have a separate home-school room, and that our master bedroom is downstairs, while the kids’ bedrooms are upstairs. Our home is surrounded by more than seven acres of lawn, gardens, and woods.
Thankfully – blessedly – we do have enough space to distance ourselves from each other and enjoy some solitude, or spend time only with the Lord.
That being said, during most of the past few weeks, we have enjoyed one another’s company. We haven’t had any major arguments. We’ve tolerated each other’s foibles. We’ve worked around each other in the kitchen and other common spaces.
But I’m sure there have been times that we have, as today’s Scripture says, passed over each other’s transgressions.
My daughter, oldest son, and husband, all people of few words, have patiently listened to me rattle on about my gardening plans for the year, or vent about my injured shoulder, or discuss a new recipe…and much more, I’m sure.
I imagine my older children have refrained from snapping at their younger brother during his many daily bids for attention.
And (for the most part) my husband and I have held back sharp retorts to remarks said in haste, fatigue, or frustration.
I didn’t consciously consider it until reading the verse in Proverbs yesterday, but we have been trying not to sweat the small stuff, the little sins we commit against each other for no reason other than our humanity.
It’s easier for me to practice patience and tolerance when I remember that each time I pass over some minor transgression, I become more like the Lord. He does not deal with our sins against him suddenly and harshly, but is instead merciful and longsuffering.
And the moment we turn to him in repentance, he forgives and forgets our sin immediately – no strings attached, no brownie points earned or wiped away. If we maintain a right relationship with God, to him, our slate is always clean.
Likewise, during these trying times, we should overlook the little faults of others, be ready to forgive, seek peace, and truly love.
How has your quarantine experience been? Has God taught you anything new during this time?
And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. – 1 Peter 4:8