After a lot of trouble getting them in the wagon, they headed over to Brewster's farm. "Good evening, Mr. Brewster. Your pigs have been in my garden. I've brought them back." The color drained from Brewster's face. "My pigs, my pigs in your garden?" "That's right. Where do you want us to put them?" Brewster's body sagged against the door and he said, "Just dump them over behind the barn."
Jansen replied with a slight grin, "OK, but they'll just get out again." When it had sunk in that Jansen had not killed the pigs, Brewster went over and shook Jansen's hand. They talked for a long time. Brewster gave him half the pigs to keep, and on Sunday he came to church. From that point on, he was a changed man.
Later one of his boys asked him what he meant when he said he would kill Brewster when they moved by him. Jansen replied,
"Not with a gun. I planned to do it another way - by heaping coals on his head. That old mean neighbor is as dead as a doornail, just like I'd said he'd be. And we're glad to be alive to see it."
Ro 12:20 On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head."
Most people respond to kindness and peace, particularly if they have been fighting you or being mean to you. Peace against enemies is probably the best witness you could have.
The Pineapple Story
"The Pineapple Story" is actually a book written by a missionary. The story deals with anger and peacemaking. A missionary and his family asked for a man to plant a garden of pineapples for him. The missionary was going to pay the planter with goods and services. The pineapples took 3 years to ripen. Before they ripened, the pineapples were all stolen. The missionary got angry. He finally found out that the planter was the one who stole the pineapples. He was still angry. The missionary tried to punish the planter several times, but this only made the missionary and his message unpopular. Eventually, the missionary asked God what he should do. Through His Word the missionary was reminded to yield the fruit to God. The missionary decided to do that but the pineapples still get stolen. Bus this time the missionary didn't get angry. The planter noticed the lack of anger and asked why the missionary didn't get angry anymore. The missionary then ahd an opportunity to witness to the planter. The planter then realized that he was really stealing the pineapples from Lord … so he stopped stealing them. In the end they all shared the ripened pineapples.
There is more to this story but the moral is that we need to give everything we have to God. Sometimes to keep the peace we must give up our rights. Being a peacemaker sometimes means we must give up our rights in order that the truths of the gospel can come through to people.
How To Be A Peacemaker
A while back TIME magazine awarded its coveted "Man of the Year" award to four men: Nelson Mandela, F. W. DeKlerk, Yassir Arafat, and Yitzhak Rabin. The reason - they each made bold moves to promote peace where there had been long-standing conflict.
While you will probably never be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, you will have opportunities to play the role of peacemaker from time to time. When conflict occurs in your office here's what the Bible says to do:
PLAN A PEACE CONFERENCE. Take the initiative. Don't wait for either the offended or the offender to make