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Ye are the salt of the earth. Matthew 5:13

 

Ye are the light of the world. Matthew 5:14

Recently, I went to the market with my wife and my cousin who had come to visit us and we parked the car at the usual public parking place as we entered the market. When we returned, my wife stopped somewhere for something as we proceeded towards the car. We found that a big lorry had parked just next to our car. We put our stuff in the car and waited for her to join us. While we were standing by the car, doors open and ready to leave anytime, some guys opened the lorry’s rear door and began to unload big bags of ice which unfortunately they started piling behind our car, blocking us from getting out.

A few minutes later, my wife arrived and we were ready to go but the ice bags were piled behind the car. I told the guys that we needed to get out and go home. They looked surprised but with a guilty conscience they said “You people saw us doing this (unloading the ice bags) and you didn’t tell us.” Then we told them “you saw us standing by the car, ready to go and you did not bother to even ask if we were leaving or if you were obstructing us.” We actually had thought they were delivering these bags to some people for immediate collection, but it turned out that they were there for display. We told them we really needed to go but they would not remove the bags. Because we would not quarrel with them, we kept quiet and waited. Finally, about one hour later, they decided to remove the bags and teasingly they asked us to buy a drink for them. Jokingly we told them they should thank us because we did not decide to sue them but we told them “thank you” as we drove off.

And rights, the legal implications of such behavior and how to go about it. In society, lawyers are viewed as people with power because of their profession and knowledge of law. Faced with such inconveniencing practices it is easy to get irritated, react and even take legal action to prove who one is and what one is capable of. Yes, our knowledge, our profession, position and influence in society can lead us in pride and self-worth and push us to take an action that will not glorify the Lord. Proverbs 17:19 says: “He who loves a quarrel loves sin,” and in chapter 20:3, we read that those quick to quarrel are fools. Also in chapter 13:10, we read that “Pride only breeds quarrels.”

How should I as a Christian lawyer handle such situations to maintain my positive influence and testimony? I need to ask myself the following questions:

  1. How would our Lord Jesus react in such a situation?
  2. What will be the end result if I take legal action?
  3. How does my action distinguish me from non-Christians?
  4. What is the best action which will glorify God and challenge my offender?

This is what being Jesus’ disciple is. This is what Jesus means by being salt and light of the earth (Matthew 5:13-16); and being gentle and humble in heart (Matthew 11:29). Our lifestyle should glorify God and when He is glorified, He will glorify us as He did with Jesus after he had successfully carried out the mission he was given on the earth (John 17:1-5).

Stephen R. Bamoleke
Uganda

– This article comes from AI’s “No Higher Calling,” a devotional for lawyers.

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