“And it came to pass after these things, that the butler of the king of Egypt and his baker had offended their lord the king of Egypt.”
There is nothing worse than having to work or live with someone who is easily offended. It seems as if Pharaoh was the type of person who was easily offended. Apparently, the butler and the baker had done something to offend him, and the result was that he put them in prison.
Just like Pharaoh, there are many people who have imprisoned someone because they were offended. I am not talking about an actual prison, but they have imprisoned them in their mind which affects how they treat that individual. Many friendships have been destroyed because someone imprisoned a friend because they were offended. Many marriages suffer, and some are actually destroyed because one spouse has imprisoned the other because they were offended. Many parent/child relationships become tumultuous because a child was offended over something their parents did or something they perceived as wrong. Let me give you some advice about being easily offended.
First, the only one you are hurting by putting someone in prison because you were offended is you. My friend, you are not hurting them, but you are hurting your ability to enjoy great relationships with people. The longer you leave them in your mental prison, the worse the situation becomes. You have to understand that they have probably moved on from the situation or may not even understand what they have done to offend you. The longer you leave them in your mental prison, the more you hurt yourself.
Second, get over yourself; life is not all about you. If you are easily offended, it is because you make life all about you. If you love the LORD and His Word, you will find it easy to overcome being offended. Psalm 119:165 says, “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.” If anything is revealed about you being easily offended, it is revealing your lack of love for God’s Word.
Third, you are missing the benefits of those whom you imprison. The people you imprison could help you in life, but they can’t help you because you have imprisoned them in your mind. The butler and the baker couldn’t help Pharaoh as long as they were in prison, and the great qualities of those whom you have imprisoned are negated because of your inability to move on.
So, how do you overcome being easily offended? First, don’t hold people to your expectations. Stop taking everything personally. Most people don’t do things just to offend you. Furthermore, nobody is going to meet your expectations of what you think they should do. Therefore, if you don’t expect everyone to do what you would do, you can keep yourself from being offended.
Second, be quick to forgive. When someone has done something to offend you, your first response must be forgiveness. If you don’t make life about yourself, you will find the things that would normally offend you will roll off your back because you are quick to forgive.
Let me ask you, who is it that you have been holding in prison? Who is it that offended you, and you won’t let them move on? You are going to find that if you can’t move on from being offended that it will affect every relationship, and you will live a sad life of being easily offended.