We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
It is hard to understand the nuances of Paul's letter, let alone emulate what he suggests. This passage of scripture has been contentious in our Bible study group. A number of members think Paul is urging us to be "doormats", turning our cheeks all over the place, while his letter to the Ephesians urges them to stand strong.
The Armor of God Ephesians 6:10-18 (NIV)
Washed in the Blood of the Lamb and baptized in the Holy Ghost as I am, I have come to realize about myself that I have only two cheeks. Not being sarcastic by any means, just acknowledging my humanity as well as my Salvation.
I look to the Old Testament when my humility falters.
I'm a long time Pentecostal convert and a recovered drug addict. I am a great believer in grace. While I'm not an AA member, Step 2 of the 12 steps sums up what Paul is talking about to me. "We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity" We all need a whole lot of divine intervention in the affairs of our lives.
The Eastern Orthodox view is that being meek and humble gives us peace in this world (that we are in but not of), so that we can be courageous when needed. Not sure how anyone would see that as being a doormat.
Well, Ann, how many times will you, or I, or any other Christian back up?
Meekness and humility sound pretty good and around the Bible study tables they are safe attitudes to assume.
Out in the world (that we are in but not of) those attitudes can result in victims.
I envy you that you have found peace in this world. I am cut from the courageous cloth. I look to the Old Testament where I can slay my enemies and still be right with God.
Perhaps people like me and folks like you can learn from each other. I'll pray for you to be strong and you might send one up to gentle me.