“If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet.”
Mathew 10:14 NIV
I love walking along a beach. Sand under my feet feels wonderful while on a beach. When it’s time to put your shoes back on it’s so hard to shake the dust off your feet and those same relaxing grains become an irritation. Jesus was so descriptive when he talked. I’m thankful for his analogies that help me understand clearly how I am to live, and in this case, how I am to deal with some people who are less than kind to me.
Throughout his ministry, Jesus taught his followers different methods on how to deal with people who hurt them. In this case, Jesus taught the disciples to remove themselves from the place and people who offend them. He didn’t tell them to make a big scene about it, but to peacefully “shake the dust off your feet” and in the very next verse God promises that He will deal with the offender and make them give account for what they did to you. It’s still our responsibility to forgive, but not to make them pay.
Just as shaking the dust off your feet after spending some time at the beach is difficult, so is learning to figuratively shake the dust off your feet and let go of unhealthy relationships. Discerning when it’s right to follow this advice from Jesus to remove yourself from people and places that bring you hurt and going through with it, will set you free to move forward in wholeness.
Father…You know the motives of men and I don’t. Help me rightly discern those people or places I need to remove myself from and learn to shake the dust off my feet, letting the hurt go. Help me to have a heart that forgives and lives in peace. In Jesus Name…Amen