I got up from the conversation and turned my back once I heard the painful words. Since it wasn’t something that I could control, or was it anything I ever intended to have hurt someone else, I felt justified in walking away. As I left, I did well not to reveal the sadness that stung me as a result of this person’s heart declaration. Though once I made it behind closed doors, I couldn’t help the noticeable sorrow that crept in beyond my defense. I knew my offender suffers with depression and can lack clarity of thought at times, but this knowledge didn’t stop my anguish over the subject that was tender for the both of us.
Two weeks ago, I had the joy of picking up one of my children from the bus stop for the very first time in his life. He is thirteen years old and while it was naturally a little more exciting for me than him, the preciousness of the moment still has not left me.
I relate the two subjects only to remind myself that there are many perspectives in this world. No two people have the same history, nor will they respond exactly alike in every situation. While our job is to love others with the sweet grace God has extended to us, it can be extremely difficult in a world of hurts.
Contrary to what many would say, I view my past as a blessing in that through it, I can relate to others on many different levels. I too have suffered with imbalance in my life. From major to minor and everywhere in between, I know suffering well. It is perhaps because I have struggled so much that I turned and walked away from perusing this hard topic with someone I care very deeply for. It is jokingly said in my home that I am part of the grand “Loss Prevention Team.” It is now more typical than not for me to recognize trouble early and flee. I do my very best to warn others to also steer clear of it. The only problem when applying this method to every circumstance is that sometimes a person may need help carrying their burdens in the dark.
I know avoiding heart ache and damage is not a bad thing, but I must remember what I am ultimately called to do.
Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Colossians 3: 12-17 (ESV)