Don't you know that bad behavior has consequences? The Bible in Galatians refers to it as reaping what you sow (Galatians 6:7). The terms are related to planting (sowing) and harvesting (reaping the results of your sowing). So if you plant corn seed in your garden in the spring , you get corn in the fall. Of course, it takes a lot of nurturing of that garden in order to reap the benefits of sowing. The corn reaped in the fall is the natural consequence of the corn seed that was sown the prior spring.
You can probably see where I am going spiritually. There are natural consequences spiritually as well. If you sow (plant) an angry thought (seed) against someone, then nurture that anger over time, you'll likely end up doing something stupid like telling that person "just what you think of them" and hurting them. That's the reaping of the anger you sowed. That's the resulting sin of your anger.
Or maybe posting something demeaning to another on a social media site that you can't take back and possibly doing irreparable damage to the relationship (I must say I became quite uncomfortable typing that). That too, is the reaping of the anger you sowed. That's also the resulting sin of your anger. Now maybe you won't see such concrete consequences. Maybe you're thinking, "Not me! I got away with it!" Or maybe you're thinking, "I Don't care if I hurt that person! They deserved it!" To that I say, sin and the fear it creates (ever try to hide a wrongdoing from your parents without fearing you'd be found out?) damages the soul. Your soul and your target's soul. When the soul is damaged, cynicism, bitterness, frustration (especially at the little things), depression and just a general oppressiveness is born. Those are real consequences.
So what's the point? Be careful what you sow because as Paul points out in the same passage, "God will not be mocked..." He knows your sin. You can't get away from the consequences - whatever they may be. It's best to not only deal with your sin you have reaped to put it behind you, but begin by catching yourself as you begin to sow that bad behavior and choose not to sow it. Choose instead to "love your enemies..."
Huh... 'love your enemies'... sounds familiar to me. How about you?
Don't you know that when I fail, when I act horribly, strike out in anger at someone or goad them into their own fit of anger, that I am exhibiting the very reason I need Christ? It's not an excuse for my poor behavior. It's reality. For everyone one of us. Don't believe me? Show me a person who says it's not true and I'll show you the very same person who grades sin on a sliding scale. Interestingly, it always slides in favor of their pet bad behaviors!
So when you see my good works or my bad behavior - and I do indeed strive to always make them good works as opposed to the bad behavior - know that I am not saved by them, but in spite of them. And know that there are always consequences to them for me in spite of my relationship with Christ.
Husband. Father. Art Director. I am husband to lovely Trudy. Father to Chelsea, Christopher and Zachary. Art Director at Buckner International. Owner of my own studio, apcreative: design for advertising.