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Several years ago, I was going through a messy divorce. My ex-husband did some pretty bad things to me, and I was angry and wanted justice.
One day in the middle of everything going on, I felt the Lord tell me, “It is not about sides.”
What? I couldn’t believe it. “It’s not about sides? You’re kidding me!”
“No,” He said, “I love him just as much as I love you. The moment he repents is the moment he’s restored.”
That is an important truth to remember right now in the United States. We are in a season when so many unjust things are happening. Our rights are being violated, and many people are getting angry.
“This should not be happening. Why is this happening? We need justice!”
The desire for justice is godly. The Lord Himself put that desire inside us, but His heart for justice often looks different than ours. When we want justice, we usually want the other party to be punished, but God’s justice means there is restoration. His heart is always for healing and the restoration of everyone involved.
The moment people repent is the moment they are restored.
Where Does Righteous Anger Fit In?
When we see clear and unmistakable injustice happening, righteous anger can rise up inside us. In that anger, we need to keep watch over our heart to make sure we are not focused on the other person’s punishment.
Many of us were raised in messed-up homes where our parents mistakenly thought that punishing us was good. They assumed they were agreeing with God and doing what He wanted as they punished us.
But the goal of righteous anger is finding God’s heart. No matter the circumstances—even in the face of blatant unrighteousness, when injustice is happening out in the open—God’s heart is not about punishment but about restoring each and every person.
How Do We Handle Seeing Injustice?
When we are betrayed by those who are supposed to keep us safe, when we are lied about, gossiped about, mocked, and rejected, these things are injustices done to the heart, and the heart needs to process these emotions.
People often think, Oh, I forgive that person. I do it quickly. It’s just over and done with as fast as possible.
es, posturing our heart to forgive is important, but we also need to process the feelings of pain and invite the Lord into those places.
When you see injustice, don’t respond flippantly or just out of habit. Process what you are feeling, and invite the Lord into the pain.
How Do We Release the Anger?
If we hold on to our anger, we are allowing it to grow, and eventually it will become unhealthy and a problem. We are basically taking the outcome of the injustice into our own hands.
When I was struggling to forgive someone, the Lord showed me a picture. I saw myself holding on to a large, beautiful bird that wanted to be set free.
I sensed the Holy Spirit come up to me and whisper, “Let it go.”
When I finally relaxed my hands, the bird unfurled huge wings—the wingspan was incredible—and the Holy Spirit said to me, “That is justice. Now she can fly. She can now do the work of bringing justice.”
When we release injustice through prayer, that is what we are doing—we are letting the bird go. When we give the anger to Him, justice can fly.
In this season, let’s be careful with our heart and be sure to release the injustices we see to the Lord. Let’s pray for our country, and let’s pray for those who are in leadership—and let’s remember that God’s heart is to fully restore.
Several years ago, something happened in the political realm that bothered me, but I felt like the Lord gave me Psalm 37:7–9. This passage really helped relieve my heart.
Even though the political situation has changed since then, I still feel like this passage describes what the Lord is doing right now in our nation.We get to be quiet in His presence and wait for Him to act—the implication being that He will act. He is going to give the land to those who trust Him. I want to be one of those people—somebody who inherits the land because of trust.
If the United States weighs heavily on your heart these days, I think you will find this month’s article interesting. Tonya Mazzola writes about what we as believers can do in a season of injustice.
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