Saturday, July 2, 2011

He knows your pain

Recently, I found out something that hit me like a sucker punch to the gut. I found out that someone I love dearly was lying to me and betrayed me in the worst possible way.  Over the past few days, as the truth has come to light and everything has become clear, I have sought the strength needed to forgive them from the one person who understands this pain the best: Jesus.

I thought about the many times that I have lied to and betrayed Jesus in my life. I have pushed Him away when I needed him the most, allowed myself to be seduced by various temptations, and ended up nearly losing everything because of it.  Usually it was not I who took the first steps to make our relationship right, either.  It was God who confronted me with the realities of what I was doing.  I reflected on this and wept because this must be what it feels like to Jesus when I am unfaithful to Him.  If He can forgive me, in spite of it all, then I can forgive this person.

This person and I have a long road to travel before I will be able to trust them again, but I am willing to walk that journey with them because Christ has walked it with me. Christ has taken me back no matter how far I've strayed or what I have done, and He continues to do so.  There are always consequences for going astray, but when I'm ready to come back he is always ready to receive me. Furthermore, even before I am ready He is there to try and help me to see what I am doing so that I can become ready.

Whatever you are dealing with today, whatever betrayal you have experienced, whatever justification you think you have to refuse to forgive someone, Christ knows your pain. You have done it to Him a thousand times over in a thousand different ways.  Ask Him for the strength to forgive, for the grace to move beyond the pain you feel right now and to use that pain to grow even closer to Christ.  Let Christ's love for you be the model by which you love this person who has hurt you. It will not be easy, but with God it is possible.

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