To Turn the Other Cheek or Not to Turn..

turn the other cheek

You always hear the phrase or suggestion to “turn the other cheek.” In life, this is far easier said than done. In essence, it means that when someone wrongs you, you are not supposed to retaliate or be out for vengeance. WHAT? Are you kidding me? Some of you are thinking, YEAH RIGHT! The origin of the phrase comes from the Bible. It reads:

Luke 6:27–31

  27 But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. 30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

Turn the other cheek. What a crazy concept, right? But think about it. How hard is it to be mad at someone that responds in love? If we all loved our enemies and did good to those who hate us, how much less hate would there be?

Turn My Other Cheek to the Guy that Rear-ended My Car?

turn the other cheek

I had a friend that got in a fender bender. He was late to work and he loved his car (some of you guys know what I was his baby). He got hit from behind and it seemed to cause a great deal of damage. He jumped out of his car, fuming mad ready to give this guy a piece of his mind and perhaps a piece of his fist! He ran towards the other driver, fully enraged, having lost complete control of his temper and of himself. This was the icing on the cake to a really bad week and he was about to take it ALL out on this careless driver. As he bolted towards the guy, the guy ran towards him and hugged him, so thankful that he was okay! He was alive! He wasn’t injured! In that moment, things changed. He couldn’t wail on this guy. HE WAS HUGGING HIM! What if you chose to do good to those who might hate you. My how our world would change!

Turn the Other Cheek? I’m No Doormat

There is truly a difference between deciding to turn the other cheek and deciding to get walked all turn the other cheek over. The intention of the scripture was not to create a world of timid doormats that the cruel can simply stomp on time and time again. I believe the true intention was to stop the cycle. Retaliation and vengeance simply perpetuate the problem. It is a never ending cycle. If you pay someone back what they had coming to them, then, odds are, they are out to get you AGAIN. But, if you turn the other cheek, break the cycle, kill them with kindness, things will change for the better. The more successful you become in life, the more haters you will have. But, the better you treat your haters, the more successful you will become. I’ve received a LOT of just really mean, cruel messages from strangers that have either visited this blog or found me on facebook. They turn the other cheek messages are personal attacks on my character usually and really could hurt if I let them. But, I choose to turn the other cheek. Don’t get me wrong. I do sit there for a minute, mentally constructing a put-them-in-their-place-who-do-they-think-they-are-message and then I remember, what will this do? It will perpetuate the problem. And I choose to love my enemies! I choose to spread kindness and hope! I have one life to live and it is my job to make it worthwhile! So, I draw my gun and I kill them with kindness! I try to put myself in their shoes. A lot of times when people are cruel or mean, it has nothing to do with you! Perhaps they have things going on, serious things, tough things, draining things and they are just taking it out on you. I want to add to their life not contribute to their problems. So, while they might have just attempted to ruin my day, I strive to make theirs better! I am not a saint, but I do know that when I respond this way, I end up feeling so much better than if I had hit send on that mental message I constructed to start. So today, I want to encourage you, if people have been unjustly rude or mean or cruel, don’t let them steal your joy. It might not be about you. They might not even be thinking twice about it, after the fact. Kill them with kindness! Turn the other cheek because you are responsible for you!

Digging Deeper,
Jessica Bowser Nelson
turn the other cheek



P.S. Deciding to turn the other cheek isn’t easy, but it is admirable!

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