Overcome evil with good ...
If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 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.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. -Romans 12:18-21 NIV
I think that we often forget what the apostle James instructs when he writes how "human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires". There is no room for payback in the kingdom of God because revenge is evil and it is the polar opposite of love. I think that even the wrath of God is not what many of us to imagine it to be. Doubtful that God is watching over those who oppose us waiting to trip them up and avenge the wrongs done to us. God is love.
Ever wonder what the significance of burning coals is? I have read that in eastern villages one would rise first and build a fire. Then the burning coals from the fire would be distributed throughout the village in pottery balanced on a boy's head. It was a pleasant task because the coals gave warmth to the boy's head. I love that image! It reminds me of how we can overcome evil by sharing the warmth of God with others by caring for those who do not love us.
Help me to be your hands and your feet today Lord. Cause me to carry your love to others in my village.