Toxicity is an ongoing condition of antagonism which perpetuates open wounds. Toxic people are experts in creating hostile environments. For over a year now my son has put up with an older woman who badgers him and his fellow employees constantly. She whines, manipulates to get her way, criticizes, and uses sarcasm and mocking to tear down those around her. Why she is such an unhappy person, no one seems to know. But going to work is not fun for Bryan.
No one likes being bullied. A toxic person is like a boxer who repeatedly hits his opponent’s body until he no longer has the mental or physical ability to resist. The ability to endure mental and emotional beatings is virtually impossible. But there is a way to escape this ring of hostility.
Hebrews 12:3—For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, so that you won't grow weary and lose heart.
According to the Gospel writers Jesus constantly faced criticism, accusations and threats from the religious and legal establishments. The very people who should have been noble instead were venomous. And from this tragic reality we find our solution to toxic people and hostile environments.
1.Don’t let feeling unfairly treated ruin your attitude, focus and disposition. Jesus was perfect and faced continuous harassment. Consider that.
2. If you aregrowing weary and losing heart, your focus is on the toxic person and personal hurt instead of on Jesus. Looking to Jesus brings healing perspective which builds the faith necessary to endure.
3. The fuel for endurance is faith in Jesus! “Therefore since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us, and run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of ourfaith. . .” (12:1,2).
Dear Lord, I feel trapped in a toxic environment. Give me the strength to believe that You can bring me through this. Help me to see where my own sin might be contributing to the problem and welcome Your discipline. May your mercy and grace reach and transform the life of this one who is so bitter and mean without You. Thank You for Your example of endurance. May my eyes stay on You. Amen.
Nothing can turn the soul that has seen God, it is a sheet-anchor for ever, like Moses he endures, “as seeing Him who is invisible.”—Oswald Chambers inNotes on Ezekiel
©2011 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)