Turning the other cheek is not easy

There was a big sergeant from a Highland regiment, serving many years ago in Egypt. On one occasion he was asked about the circumstances of his conversion and why he became a Christian. He told the story of a private in his company when he was serving in Malta. 

The private was frequently harassed by the other soldiers for his religious faith. One night  the private came into his barracks quite late. It was a very rainy night. Before getting into his bunk, he knelt down as was his custom and he prayed before he got into his bed. 

The sergent picked up one of his boots, which was heavy with wet mud, he threw it across the room and hit the private on the side of the head. The private said nothing. He wiped the mud from his face and crawled into bed. The next morning, however when the sergent woke up, he found his muddy boots cleaned and polished by his bedside. The sergent said, “It broke my heart.”

Turning the other cheek is not easy. The first inclination is to strike back. To get even. To seek revenge. The route that Jesus urges upon us - and practiced Himself, is the behavior which is more likely to influence another person for good.

“I say unto you, that ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:39)

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