Someone has been hurting me for DECADES. Not only is the hurt exceeding, and not only will the wounds and scars be with me until I draw my last breath, but the person in her pride has never once acknowledged her wrongdoing nor made any loving change. What she has done, and is doing, and how if I bring the subject up she twists it around and lashes out at me, has done permanent damage. But this message isn’t about what SHE has done wrong. It’s about how NOT to handle hurt.
Recently I fell back into sin in response to her wrongdoing. I meditated on how she treats me, got really riled up about it, lost my temper, and lashed out in vengeance foolishly thinking somehow despite years of trying to show her how she hurts me that this time around I would have an impact and she would apologize and change. In typical fashion, she turned it around and blamed me. But this isn’t the point. I SHOULD NOT HAVE LOST MY TEMPER, LASHED OUT, TAKEN MY ANGER OUT ON HER, AND TRIED TO CHANGE HER.
One of the most powerful verses in the Bible when it comes to how to handle hurt for me is about the Lord Jesus Christ:
“For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “WHO COMMITTED NO SIN, NOR WAS DECEIT FOUND IN HIS MOUTH”; who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.” 1 Peter 2:21-24 NKJV
God mercifully led me to repentance. I sought His forgiveness and hers. She of course did not apologize for what she has done all these years. But that’s not the point. We who follow Jesus are to love, forgive, and to be merciful. Sometimes God will call us to walk away from relationships with people who hurt us, and sometimes He will call us to stay. But either way, we need to obey God. And NOT seek vengeance, NOT hurt those hurting us, NOT act out of our emotions, etc. We are to “walk in love”.
I have the strongest sense as I write this that someone or even many people who read it really need to hear this. Do you?
“But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Matthew 6:15
“Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY,” says the Lord.” Romans 12:19
“Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.” Ephesians 5:1-2 NKJV