I am a person who sees matters in black and white. There is no gray area with me. Right is right and wrong is wrong, and there’s very little in between. This trait of mine can serve me well on some days but not so well on other days.
I am also very justice minded. In my eyes, the right and good should be rewarded, while wrong and evil should be punished.Just that plain and simple. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the world operated this way? But sadly, it doesn’t. And when this doesn’t happen, I can get very easily turned upside down (metaphorically speaking!).
And so, the phrase “just take the high road” is often most difficult for people like me. That phrase implies that we are to overlook some wrongs, or shortcomings, or injustices and just keep on keeping on as if nothing has happened. Taking the high road is VERY hard for me, and it has been almost comical how often I’ve heard the whisper of God telling me to do just that.
Whether His voice comes through other people in my life or through the soft whisper of the Holy Spirit in my heart, the high road is never an easy road for me to take. But many times, over my life, I’ve had to take the high road. For peace in my own heart and for the peace in relationships my life, there was no other option but to take that darn HIGH ROAD!
The apostle Paul speaks of this infamous “high road” in I Corinthians 6:7 (TPT) when he says: “Wouldn’t it be better to accept the fact that someone is trying to cheat and take advantage of you and SIMPLY CHOOSE THE HIGH ROAD?”
Now, before you throw your phone, computer or whatever device you’re reading this on across the room, let me give you some context as to what the Bible is saying and what it’s not saying.
The Bible is not saying that we allow people to mistreat us, walk over us, abuse or harm us! We are not to overlook abuse, illegal/criminal behavior, or evil in any way!
The context to which the apostle Paul makes this statement is that Christians (believers) were bickering and publicly exposing their conflicts with other Christians, which in turn, was affecting non-believers in an adverse way.
Christians were airing their dirty laundry with one another and fussing and fighting, which ultimately was causing them to lose their godly influence and testimony in their community with lost people. They were being a terrible example of how to “love one another” (John 13: 34-35).
To explain it in my black and white language: their testimonies of the saving grace and love of God were at risk because of their foolish and selfish behavior.
Paul was addressing these Christians and basically was saying to them: “STOP IT!! You’re making a bad name for yourself through your behavior and ultimately tarnishing the reputation of the God you serve! Just take the high road in some of these matters that you are arguing about, and in doing so, you can salvage your reputations as Christians, and most importantly, the reputation of God!”
My pastor has said often over the years: “Being right isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be! Your relationships are more important than you being right.”
The high road.
That proverbial high road that none of us want to take.
But it is the high road, that at times God asks us to take, that upholds our testimonies to a lost world of a gracious, loving, and forgiving God. We cannot show the world this kind of God if our own lives are not representative of the qualities and character of the God we serve.
Is there a high road you need to take?
Is there a situation that you just need to drop and walk away from? Regardless of who’s right or who’s wrong?
Are you pleading your case in a relationship, determined for that other person to see it your way?
Are you fussing and fighting with other Christians in a public way, putting your own testimony and godly example at risk to a lost world?
And by doing so, turning lost people/unbelievers away from God, instead of pointing them to God?
Here’s the thing with the high road: no one needs to know you are taking it.
You don’t need to announce or parade down the high road for all to see.
God sees that you’re taking it. And that’s all that matters.
What is that high road you need to take? Are you hearing the whisper of the Holy Spirit saying “simply choose the high road”?
Just take it. And do it now. Don’t wait.
The longer you try reasoning as to why you shouldn’t take the high road, the higher the risk that you will never take it.
By not taking the high road, you choose to stay on the low road and the low road never won anyone to Christ.
Not everyone can take the high road however. Not everyone has the humility to take it. Not everyone can lay down their selfish desires and insatiable need to be right.
Not everyone can.
But you can.
Simply choose the high road.