June 19, 2012

On Revenge

By St. Nikolai Velimirovich

"Say not, I will repay evil! Trust in the Lord and He will help you" (Proverbs 20:22).

Do not be vengeful; do not return evil for evil. The evil from your neighbor is sufficient. If you return evil for evil to him, you will double the evil in the world. If you do not return evil for evil to him, he can still burn out his evil through repentance. Thus, you will reduce evil in the world through patience and forgiveness.
Do not be vengeful; do not return evil for evil. "But wait on the Lord," He sees and remembers and, in your time, even you and your evil doer will know that God sees and remembers. You ask yourself: What have I done in that I have not returned evil for evil? You have done the wisest deed that you could do in the given situation, i.e.; you have relinquished your struggle to the One Stronger than yourself and the Stronger will victoriously fight for you. If you enter into battle with the evil doer you might be defeated. But God cannot be defeated. Therefore, relinquish your struggle to the Victorious and Undefeated One and patiently wait.

Learn from a small child. If someone attacks a child in the presence of his parents, the child does not return the attack by attacking but rather looks at his parents and cries. The child knows that his parents will protect him. How is it that you do not know what a little child knows? Your heavenly Parent is constantly beside you. That is why, do not be vengeful; do not return evil for evil rather look at your Parent and cry. Only in this way will you guarantee victory for yourself in conflict with evil men.

O Almighty Lord Who said: "Vengeance is Mine" (Romans 12:19; Hebrews 10:30), protect us from the unrighteous ones by Your almighty hand and restrain us from vengeance. Counsel us by Your Holy Spirit that the greater heroism is to endure rather than to avenge. To You be glory and thanks always. Amen.