I remember around the age of sixteen someone very close to me betrayed me. For the sake of this blog let’s refer to her as, “Margaret”. I was a new Christian, but definitely knew I was to have a forgiving heart towards others because God had been so merciful to me!
Knowing this truth did not change the ever growing hatred in my heart towards Margaret. I would confess to God, “I hate her! I know I’m not supposed to, but I do.”
Although, all I felt in my heart towards her was disgust and hatred, I began to pray for Margaret. Not only did I pray for her, but I prayed that I could love her again.
Through those tears and prayers God began to show me how he viewed Margaret. He told me about how much he loved her and reminded me that she didn’t have a relationship with Him.
“But the Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him.”
Daniel 9:9 NLT
I held onto that anger and bitterness for about a year. But through gaining God’s vision I began to see Margaret the way God saw her. She was broken, afraid, hurt, and lost. Through that revelation I began to see Margaret as Margaret and no longer just saw her sin and the pain she caused me.
I wish I could tell you Margaret gave her life to Christ immediately after this and that her behavior changed towards me after that revelation and that she never hurt me again. The truth is Margaret did hurt me again, but everyday I would wake up and say, “Lord help me to forgive,” and He was faithful to give me grace to do that daily.
There is so much truth in the saying: “hurt people hurt people.”
If you’re hurt today remember anger and bitterness do not have the power to heal you. Only love can do that. Remember the love and mercy that God shows to you daily. Ask him to change their heart, but more importantly your heart. Pray that you would extend the same love and mercy God has given you unto them.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.”
Ephesians 4:31-32 NLT