Blue Ocean Families
Family Life. Tailor Fit.
This is a tough one indeed, and as you have discovered it’s sometimes harder to show grace when it’s a friend who has been hurt.
The best I can come up with is a technique I discovered not too long ago. It sounds somewhat like the “pain, pain, pain” idea (though I don’t know anything more about it than what you said): I tell myself, “Embrace the pain.” It’s part the old fable about grasping the nettle firmly, part Romans 8:28, part Proverbs 27:6, and part the martial arts idea of using your opponent’s actions to your benefit. If I accept the pain, take it in, and don’t fight it, God can use it to my benefit, whether the one who inflicted it was right or wrong, beneficent or maleficent.
When I can manage to do this, I find it both liberating and empowering. The downside? I’m really not very good at it yet, and I would really rather avoid opportunities to practice.
Sounds good! I wonder if you can practice in smaller hurts that you would normally let roll off you. It would be less risky and get you some much needed experience for the hard stuff.
I just discovered your blog, Janet! Your messages are so encouraging!
Thank you for that timely thought – the judgment thing pops up around me at church all the time. I didn’t realize the extent to which I was being pulled into the downward spiral until the other day my 12-year-old said: “Mom, you don’t like … very much, do you?” It hit me, that I am influencing my kids toward being critical and judgmental, if I don’t bring my pain to God. After listening to your blog post, I decided that I need to share my process of repenting and forgiving with the kids, since they also saw my frustration and pain. Talking about my attitude problems in our family weakens the temptation to hold a grudge. Then the next time I am judged by that particular person, I can say “Here we go again, but we already decided to forgive that person, didn’t we Lord?
1. Peter 2,23 came to my mind: I do better if I keep my eyes on Jesus who dealt with ridicule and insults by “entrusting himself to the One who judges justly.” And that he will take care of my soul’d needs!
Here’s the whole passage:
23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” 25 For “you were like sheep going astray,” but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
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