At some point in our lives, we will be mistreated by others. Regardless of whether that mistreatment was intentional, the consequences of their actions will leave you feeling angry and disappointed. You’ll most likely want to get that person back for their behavior.  I want to remind you that God said, “Vengeance is mine, and I will repay.”  (Deut 32:35)

God knows this is easier said than done, especially when it looks like evil people continue to flourish. Please remember, looks can be deceiving (John 7:24). No one can escape from God’s wrath. We can take comfort in the fact that God is NOT mocked (Gal 6:7). In due season, those who mistreat you will be punished.

In the meantime, if you’re confused about how you should react, I want to encourage you to do the following:

1.) Pray for wisdom

Now I don’t know about you, but praying is normally the last thing I feel like doing, but I know this is the very action that will place me in a position of victory. You need to pray first because not all battles are worth your time and energy to fight. God is omnipotent. He knows us, and He knows our enemy. Going to God for guidance is going to place us in a position to fight back (James 1:5). 

There have been so many times in my life when I found myself exerting unnecessary energy to keep toxic people and jobs in my life because I was under the false impression that I needed them. Then there were battles that I should have fought, but I allowed fear to get in the way, which without a doubt, delayed God’s ability to bless me by leveraging that difficult situation for my good.

When you pray for wisdom, God is going to provide you with the people and resources you need to decide whether to confront or ignore someone’s behavior.

2.) Confront vs. Ignore

Deciding whether to confront or ignore someone’s behavior is the next step you need to take in learning how to address someone mistreating you. It’s unfortunate that some people don’t know how to process their emotions. Some people may have felt you mistreated them without you even knowing they felt this way, or this person may be having a bad day and not realize they are taking their frustrations out on you. Regardless, please do not make the situation worse by gossiping that does not solve anything. My rule of thumb is never to say something behind someone’s back that you haven’t already said to their face.

There’s nothing wrong with you seeking clarity by confronting someone about their behavior towards you. Christ wants us to be as bold as a lion, not a doormat that folks enjoy walking on whenever they see fit.

I want you to keep in mind when you’re confronting someone, you are to do exactly as Matt 18:15 says and go directly to that person.  For example, if someone is being rude towards you and treating you unfairly, and you know you have not done anything wrong, you should confront this person.

Let that person know exactly how you feel. If that person takes your attempt to clear the air and correct their behavior towards you the right way, they will apologize. If they don’t believe they have done something wrong, then leave that person alone. Life is too short for you to allow  toxic people to take up space in your life. 

Please note that if someone is truly sorry, then they will apologize. They need to actually say the words “I’m sorry,” or I apologize. Doing so demonstrates that this person acknowledges and accepts responsibility for their behavior and will actively change their behavior so they don’t intentionally make the same mistake twice. 

Now keep in mind we all have free will. You can’t force someone to apologize, so if this person refuses to apologize, in order to protect your mind, you have to separate from that person. If someone is too prideful to apologize, they are not worth your time anyway. This person clearly has no character, integrity, or wisdom. They have nothing to offer you, so there is absolutely no reason to keep them in your life. By the way, this includes family members.  If they are not living up to their title as a mom, dad, brother, sister, cousin, or whatever, then you need to do yourself a favor and let them go, or they will bring you down. 

Do not, I repeat, do not allow people to talk you into feeling false guilt that you must forgive someone who did not ask for forgiveness. Even Christ requires you to ask for forgiveness before you can attain salvation. Christ isn’t holding a grudge if you choose not to repent. He just won’t recognize you as a part of His family (Heb 7:26). We need to follow Christ’s example andmirror His actions (1 Peter 2:21-25)

You have to have composure so you can  analyze the situation. Do not stoop down to the other person’s level. People are so quick to overuse or misuse the term turn the other cheek.Christ fought back.

Christ doesn’t want us to be doormats. He wants you to be wise with the battles you choose to fight.  Some battles require you to ignore people like when Jesus did when the Pharasees were trying to trick him into whether the adulterous woman should be stoned. Jesus bent down to the ground and started writing on the ground ignoring their question. Some battles require violence if someone is trying to harm you. Some battles require outward emotion to demonstrate that you are upset, like when Jesus was flipping over tables in the temple because they disrespected His house and He wanted them gone (Matthew 21: 12-13).  Regardless of how you choose to face your battle, you need to make sure that you contain your anger but refrain from sinning.

3) Be ye angry and sin not

Be ye angry and sin not is the last thing you need to keep in mind when attempting to process how you should react when you are mistreated. The Bible literally says in Eph 4:26, “Be ye angry and sin not.”  I cannot stress enough if you’re angry, this is the time you especially want to go to God in prayer.  For the record, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being angry. Where most folks run into issues is that they end up not properly channeling their anger. They either go around gossiping or allow their anger to cause them to explode in ways that are destructive to you and themselves. You don’t want to get into a situation where you end up paying consequences you’re not willing to handle.

Speaking from personal experience, it’s not fun when someone mistreats you but now you have a game plan. You need to go to God in prayer for guidance in order to determine if the situation is a battle worth fighting then from there God will let you know whether you need to confront or ignore the person. Regardless of which direction God tells you to go, you must contain your anger in such a way that it doesn’t further worsen the situation. 

Involving God at the beginning  will provide you with a peace that surpasses all understanding, whereby you can approach the matter with a calm state of mind. This positions you to be strategic in how you approach your situation.  You can’t create a game plan when you’re hysterical and being a hothead. If you allow anger to control your thinking, you will stoop down to the level of the person who mistreated you. 

We definitely don’t want that to happen, so regardless of whether the person acknowledges their wrongdoing and apologizes or they choose not to do so be prepared to drop the matter and move on with your life. 

You weren’t meant to take everyone on your journey. If someone is mistreating you, do yourself a favor and remove them from your group so you can make it to your destination with your sanity in tact.