Saturday, October 23, 2010

How To Act When Treated Unjustly

It is common to find ourselves in a situation where we feel we have been treated unjustly.  This can happen in many ways.  We may be falsely accused of making difficulty for someone else or simply not given credit for our good works.  When we have this feeling how are we supposed to respond as Christians?
Elder Paisios says,
When people treat us unjustly, we must be happy, because God’s justice, which is superior to human justice, will protect us.  We should either seek human justice, or patiently wait for the justice of God.  We must be careful however, not to pursue an unjust treatment, because this would be unfair on our part and would indicate lack of love towards other  people.
 It is for our benefit to hope for divine justice, when treated unfairly, and not react to the injustice done to us.  Not only we will profit from this, but later on our children will be benefited as well.  However, the opposite thing happens, when people curse us and the curse is just.
This is a tall order.  It is very difficult for most of us to remain happy when treated unjustly.  But is can become a signal for us to step back and reflect why we have been given this feeling.  Is it due to our unreasonable expectations, our arrogance, our lack of humility, or what?  To have the capability to pause at the moment of this feeling is essential so we do not counteract with unjust treatment.  

Love is always the basis for proper actions.  This requires that we have the opportunity to reflect before we act, so say a small prayer, make th esign of the Cross, and to figure out how to act out of love.
Source: Elder Paisios of the Holy Mountain, p 86

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