So a few weeks ago, someone I consider close to me hurt me deeply. It’s one of those things where you’ve heard of this type of situation happening and you have all of the solutions and remedies as someone outside of the situation, BUT when you’re actually in it you’re unsure of what to make of it. UGH. I was angry. Upset. Annoyed. Frustrated. Hurt. Sad. Confused. It took all of me to realize that this situation happened to unlock a greater perseverance in my faith journey and also to restore God as number one in my life. No matter what, God really has NEVER EVER failed me. #truth
He needed to remind me that everyone around me will let me down but He is the only one who will remain the same. So today, I’m so grateful for those lessons.
What’s so funny about God is that after this whole situation unfolded, I was pushed into ministry work. It was prayer week at my church in anticipation for Easter the following week so that meant intense prayer and fasting. I had to serve others in our feet washing ceremony on Holy Thursday. I then had to speak before everyone about one of Jesus’ last words which was chosen for me ..and ironically was “Father, forgive them.” At one point, in the midst of tears, I had to chuckle to God like “…You’re funny, Lord. I guess You really want me to get through this.” And that’s just like God to place us in situations or tests that push us to produce something that in the moment we can’t seem to see inside of ourselves. It’s been over a month and I’m grateful that I’ve made it this far especially considering that in those moments when I found out something so devastating and unprecedented, I had no clue what the outcome could be.
From this healing experience, I’ve realized that every test produces perseverance. I’ve also realized that forgiveness is not from a position of superiority but instead of humility. You have to be humble to give and receive forgiveness. Do you know how hard that is?! Omg. In this situation, I wanted to be right because..to be honest… I did nothing wrong for this to happen. But I also realized that I need humility to realize, that in the same exact way, God did nothing wrong and yet, He forgives me …daily.
I don’t treat God with as much attention and gratitude as I should. I sometimes offer half-hearted attention and conversation. What are we offering to God? Are we offering sour grapes to the True Vine ? Once we come to recognize that our offerings to God will never repay the debt we owe of His great sacrifice, we will realize that we are in constant need of His forgiveness and mercy. None of us are exempt because we all sin and fall short of the glory of God. That’s a fact. None of us are in a position to judge another person because we all have done wrong. No one should be righteous to a fault. And that’s why we forgive others.
We realize that we are undeserving of the mercy and grace that follows us which prompts us to extend God’s grace and mercy to those who have wronged us. It hurts though! Oh my goodness, extending that mercy and grace hurts. I’m pretty sure Jesus’ stripes hurt even more but by His stripes … (Isaiah 53:5 NLT).
Forgiveness and healing go hand in hand. And I’m learning that before I can forgive someone else, I NEEDDDD to accept the fact that I am flawed too and I need God’s forgiveness daily. Because of my flaws, I am not in any position to withhold forgiveness from someone else no matter what they’ve done. I’m just not in that position to do that. I also realize that when someone hurts another person it is because they are hurting internally themselves.
To the persons who prompted this blog post, I hope you read this not with guilt but with hope. I realize I may never get a formal apology and that you may battle the guilt of knowing that you hurt me. God still wants you, still loves you and knows you’re hurting. I’m praying for you. And I forgive you.
xo Neish ❤