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SCHADENFREUDE! [shahd-n-froi-duh]

Sunday’s Monday

Schadenfreude (shahd-n-froi-duh) is a German word for satisfaction or pleasure felt at someone else's misfortune. It seems that epicaricacy (epi-car-i-cacy) is a Greek derivative meaning Rejoicing at or derivation of pleasure from the misfortunes of others. There are no English words that mean the same thing so I’m going to use the English word animosity (an-uh-mos-i-tee) which means a feeling of strong dislike, ill will, or enmity that tends to display itself in action. I found this to be vigorously enlightening, there is no English word that directly speaks to the subject. Sounds like the English weren’t proud of their little secret and therefore failed or refused to create a word to cover this imperfection. However, Luke captures the action in Luke 6:45 (NLT) a good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart. This is a situation in which just going to church cannot cleanse as it is often deep-seated and nurtured by the host.

This is often a sustained feeling that becomes secretly exhilarating as one awaits this time of pain and suffering for their subject. It can be called a host of names, but my favorite is God is going to get you for that. The people that I speak to with this obvious predicament are very good at holding on to this emotion yet very poor at hiding and they will inevitably think God will be their avenger. I have found as well that many of the people suffering from this animosity honestly believe that God is backing their hateful desire to see pain inflicted on what they believe to be their offender. They stand on Romans 12:19 (NLT), Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the Lord. They fail or refuse to read further in Romans 12:20-21 (NLT), Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” 21 Don’t let evil conquer you but conquer evil by doing good.

The mouth has many virtues; one of them is that it acts as a thermometer reading the condition of our heart. It will eventually reflect those things that temper our emotions, joy, faith, disgust, pain, and confusion are a few of a very long list. Humans for whatever reason seem to enjoy that which causes pain as if we’re punishing ourselves for something. The usual problem with this is we cause others to suffer because of our hurt feelings which is a symptom of envy, jealousy, depression, shame, and more. Pride is the number one cause of one’s desire to see the downfall of another. We are told in Proverbs 24:17 (NLT), Don’t rejoice when your enemies fall; don’t be happy when they stumble. I would like to share a solution that took me years to learn, “you will never find what you’re looking for until you’re looking where it's at!” God is the answer! John 16:33 (NLT), I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart because I have overcome the world.” Jesus can and will dispel these feelings as one becomes immersed in 1 John 3:16 (NLT), We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So, we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. And start believing and living what is written in Romans 12:19. (re-read from 2nd paragraph)

Abba, we come to you this day bringing praise and worship because you alone are worthy of our praise. Father, I come before you on behalf of myself and our readers asking you to help us understand that these feelings are naturally birthed in our species and nothing to be ashamed of. Help us Lord to know that Jesus is able to correct and conform these undesirable feelings as long as we abide in you. Jesus our brother, please lead us into the peace and love of comfort written in 2 Corinthians 1:3 (NLT), All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. 4 He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. I pray this is who we all inwardly desire to be instead of this fleshly vindictive person who can find joy in the misfortune of others. Amen




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