Right from ages, people have always talked about their rights. Some feel their rights are or were taken away. Some believe their rights are being encroached on, and some think they do not have enough rights or don’t have any at all. Rights are great, we are protected by our rights; the young and the old have their rights to live as happy citizens of their nations. Is there any right that says you have to be deemed right though?
Has anybody thought of the fact that exercising your right does not imply that you are doing it right? People often talk about the right to talk freely for example – What quality of words roll out from your tongue, or you just care about the quantity of words?
The thief at the right hand side of Jesus exercised his right to freedom of speech. He slighted the Messiah, he talked down on the King of Glory. Probably he had been looking for the opportunity to dress down this man everyone was calling ‘important’, the opportunity came for him. He did not have to see any reason to carry out his plan. The thief was said to be: “hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” – Luke 23:39.
The thief at the right hand also exercised his right to speak freely, but out of his mouth came the word of peace. Jesus did respond, but with the word of peace to the one who spoke in peace.
What was Jesus’ response to the abusive thief? – SILENCE.
Silence is golden.
What forms the topic of your speech when you exercise your right to freedom of speech. If your topic is not right, then you are wrong in exercising your right. How high is your pitch of voice and how dirty are your words in exercising your right to speak? If you are inflicting verbal injury on people in the process of exercising your right, someone else’s right is being trampled or infringed on you know. When you want to be at the right, when you want to be justified as being right, when you want to exercise your right to be right, lots of your energy will go into frivolous and flimsy issues. As a matter of fact, any citizen of heaven have had their rights to always be right nailed to the cross with Jesus.
Some years back, I was on a trip with some women to a conference in another province. A wonderful moment before the King of kings. A great time to bond with the daughters of Zion. We all travelled on a chartered bus. Ready to make our way home, I was feeling blessed. In our midst on this trip was a woman from Africa, who came on holiday to Canada. This excited woman was taking pictures everywhere, I was the lucky photographer. Finding herself in the great facility of Queens University, she was enjoying the poses. At one point, she posed for a shot at the entrance of the bus we rode in, as I was trying to work the camera to get the best posture, I caught through the lens that a woman was waiting behind her, wanting to exit the bus. I stopped and said to the posing woman ” there is someone (eeyan – in my language) behind you, please let her exit the bus before we continue”. The woman I was advocating for snapped. She said, “I am not ‘someone’ (eeyan) my name is da-da-da”. She began to rant and rave. I was glued to the spot. All eyes were on this woman pouring out words, and Me standing before her like a child being scolded by her mother. Imagine her standing on the exit platform of the bus and I on the ground level standing at attention with no word at all. She went on and on. When she stopped, I moved and completed my task of the picture taking.
A Woman of God walked up to me and held my hand, she said, “May The Lord continue to increase you in patience”. Some people came to me, trying to lift it off me. How did I feel? Did not feel any upset, I found it funny, quite unprecedented eh. Overall, I was grateful to God, much more for His Grace.
I did not find it so hilarious until many years later when I heard a man of God giving his own account that is so similar to mine. He was dressed down in a meeting. I was cracking my ribs when he said, in such a situation when your abuser is done, ask him or her “Do you have any more suggestions for me?” – I was roaring with laughter in my car with the way he said it and so was his congregation. Jokingly, he mentioned that he forgot to do this in his situation though.
Dear Mr and Ms Rights out there:
Raising your voice and people staying quiet for you does not imply that you are right, it only bares the right state of your mind. Check what it means in the Bible.
Raining verbal abuse on people and they still come back to tell you they are sorry is just momentarily gratifying for you; mounting you on a pedestal of tissue paper, few drops of water will make it crumble. Again, the Bible throws some light on situations as such. Check it out.
Throwing a tantrum and people pacifying you does not have you in the right side of your rights. Grow up buddy.
Go ahead and give that piece of your mind, it just helps the wise to know the kind of mind that is enclosed in that body of yours. Keep your mind, don’t lose it all.
Continuing in that huffing and puffing? Trust you know that you are just making a good entertainment for people around you. An FOC- Free Of Charge Show. You are of course living an imprint on other people’s minds. Your dignity might be eroding.
Everybody is doing what is right in their own sights in the name of exercising their rights. No one is ever wrong, actions are justified by ‘I won’t be taken for a ride’. The sad thing is nobody is willing to weigh their own actions and view them with clarity of the scripture.
I am striving to have a full control of all the truth. Therefore, I yearn to be like the Bereans, study the word, celebrate the true work of the Holy Spirit, as he works on the illumination of the Word in me.
Pals, always make the yardstick for your actions in the scripture, if it contradicts the Word, just chuck it. Think of your integrity in Christ. Your right to be right is only mirrored in the book of life.
Happy Easter Folks!