Godly Woman Characteristic (Series): Not malicious
Like the ungodly they maliciously mocked; they gnashed their teeth at me. – Psalm 35:16
“Hmmm. Maybe a little of this…” said my niece, muttering to herself in the kitchen. “Oh yes, some of this as well!”, she exclaimed. Looking up, I glanced over into the kitchen and asked, “Watcha ya doing punkin?”. “Experimenting,” she quickly responded.
“Oh boy,” I whispered.
The love of experiments
I usually love experimenting in the kitchen and have always taught her to have an open mind, so I guess her love for this stems from me. My niece creations, let’s just say they can be interesting masterpieces. Sure enough, a few hours later when she proclaimed all was done, we sat down at the table, and I tested my ability to keep a straight and interested face as I asked what we were eating today.
After explaining, I picked up something that looked like a palm-size rock in my hands and asked, “so what is this?” Sighing she whined, “Well Aunty, that is a biscuit, but I think something went wrong! I wanted to make the KFC buttery type of biscuit, but I don’t understand what happened.”
By this time, holding in my laughter was becoming harder by the minute. Getting up from the table, I started rummaging in our food pantry to find the ingredient I knew she missed. “Aha, I got it!” I announced. Walking over to her, I showed her the missing item, yeast. I explained, “To get that fluffy texture for your biscuits, you either need some yeast or baking powder will also do.”
Replacement for Malice
Yeast is an amazing agent. A small amount will have a powerful effect on the dough. In Matthew 13:33, Jesus told a parable comparing the kingdom of heaven to a woman using a little yeast “until it worked throughout the dough.” Just a little from us can cause a tremendous impact in the kingdom of heaven.
There is another fact about yeast though that is important. The yeast must be fresh to work in how it supposed to; otherwise, the dough produced will be stiff and flat. In his first letter to the Corinthians, Paul was addressing the rampant disregard towards sexual immorality in the church. He referenced getting rid of malice and wickedness and replacing it with sincerity and truth.
Your boasting is not good. Don’t you know that a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough? Get rid of the old yeast, so that you may be a new unleavened batch—as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. Therefore let us keep the Festival, not with the old bread leavened with malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. – 1 Corinthians 5:6-8
According to the online dictionary, Malice is defined as “the intention or desire to do evil; ill will”.
Beware of the traps Godly Woman
I used several examples of how we could all fall into that trap:
In a bible study session studying the Book of Obadiah, we learned about the boasting, malice and wickedness of the Edomite nation towards Gods people, the Israelites. I challenged the group to look within our own hearts to identify any form of malice.
- Boss or colleagues at work giving us a hard time and we can’t wait until they are punished for mistreating us;
- Neighbour has a new car or the latest technology, and we feel jealousy and ill will against all that they have;
- Your husband is having an affair or abusing you;
- Someone is bullying or mistreating your child.
Many times, malice is formed from a level of jealousy, mistreatment or hatred. A little of either, like yeast, can grow and become hailstorms in our lives, causing ungodliness.
Food for thought
Malice is a characteristic of a godly woman. It is hard to be betrayed by family, friends, or others we have treated well. Like David, in Psalm 35:16, we may find persons in our lives who are not genuine, honest and reliable but falsely accuse and slander us. How should we, as women of God, treat those individuals? Is there anyone in our lives who may look at our behaviour and say that we are malicious towards them?
Prayer: Father, with traps set before us and sin that can entangle us, we call out to you for wisdom. Fill us with a discerning spirit to understand our environments and the enemies that surround us. We know that a woman after your own heart will work towards ridding herself of malice, instead of pursuing discipline, faith and trust in you. Purify our minds and set guard over our hearts. In Jesus’ name. Amen