It has been a rough week. I will have to be vauge here because I do not want to get personal. What I want to share is that loving someone can bite you in the butt at times. This week I have been accused of things that I have never done. I tried to love someone and it turned ugly. I tried to explain myself and be honest in a difficult situation. What I have learned is that you can consistantly care and show someone love for years on end and it can turn on you the minute you do not agree with them or handle something the way they want you too. I have to be honest here, I had to be honest about my perspective and feelings. Honesty is supposed to be the best policy, but it isn't. Do you know what honesty can get you? Honesty can sever ties, make you look judgemental, and totally wreck havoc on a relationship. But for me, it is the chance I have to take. I can't be dishonest. I can't tip toe around and pretend that something is okay when it isn't. I think for all new relationships I need to have a written disclaimer:
If you choose to go into a friendship with me you are subjecting yourself to someone that will tenaciously care about your well being. You will have a loyal friend, so loyal to your well being that you may be subjected to hearing what is good for you and that may not feel good. You may percieve this as judgement, but what is actually happening to you is that you have a friend that cares more about what is good for you than the very friendship that we share. As a caviate, you must know that you are also going into a friendship with someone who is working hard on herself to be healthy in relationships and will not tolerate someone who is maniplitive, decieving, or abusive. I will still care for you but will not be going along for the ride you enjoy taking me on.
Oh how I wish that words could better express what is in one's heart. If only others preconcieved ideas and notions didn't cloud those words to mean things they were never intended for. Even plan English doesn't do justice to the heart. Hmmm.....maybe I should take up poetry and ditch this personal expository type of writing!
Ouch. Do I do this perfectly? No. Is it an area of growth and obedience for me? Yes. This testing ground for so much of this love stuff is within my own marriage. True love isn't all the mushy stuff of a young and whimsical heart. True love is tested in the fire of the nitty gritty of marriage and family life. So this is my take on this part of the I Corinthians 13 love chapter, because I'm still tackling love!
With love forgiveness is paramount. Does forgiveness mean you forget and pretend the offence never happened? Yes, in some cases. People make mistakes. People are tired, hungry, overwhelmed, and ignorant of how they effect you. We all hurt one another and I hope that those stupid mistakes I make are not in a record book. And yet, when there is someone who continually hurts you with not ever trying to make things right, yes you still forgive, and you do not keep a record of their wrongs, but you can remember that they are unhealthy for you and choose to keep at a safe distance. If the hurtful person wants to reconcile and makes an effort to repent from their unhealthy behavior, of course you forgive, you probably already have. But I want to add a warning, an abusive person will feign reconciliation during the cycle of abuse. I do not believe that we are to stay within anyone's cycle of abuse. Over time you will know if this person is genuine.
Be liberal in your forgiveness Christian brother and sister. Be good caretakers of your soul as well by not keeping a record of wrong, do not harbor bitterness a home in your heart, yet be careful to not allow unhealthy relationships destroy you.
So my original plan was to write about love in 2016. For some reason at the beginning of any year, I think that I posses the power to make plans that I am sure I will have the time to follow through on. Instead of hitting those plans out of the ballpark, I'm super busy trying to hit all the curve balls of that year. As the school year approached last fall many parts of my life filled up and got busy. Oh how I hate that word, busy. I don't use it any more with pride, I use it to describe that the unexpected took over my vision of how I wanted things to go.
This is where I left off my attempt to "Tackle Love". Love is not easily angered. I didn't really want to focus on thinking about this. I didn't want to be tested and tried in regards to anger. I don't know that I have been tested and tried in this area, but I have a few thoughts (I'm sure you do as well).
When you love someone, I mean really love THEM, you get to know them. Getting to know someone is knowing what makes them tick, and what sets them off. It is more difficult to get angry at someone that you know these things about. It is more difficult to get angry when you know these things and love them.
The people that I am closest to are my husband and my boys. I live with these people (except my oldest son now lives on his own). We know each other pretty well. Yes there is frustration. It is easy to become frustrated with someone when they don't do their part of chores, or who are too loud when they need to be quiet. I don't have a huge amount of anger toward them because I try very hard to know each of them and their differences. What I mean by anger is red blooded hot I want to ring your neck kind of emotion. But we do have frequent frustration. We are all different and have different likes, dislikes, wants and needs. Friction can happen without sparks flying if you keep things lubed with love. I think of love as knowing the other person and respecting their boundaries and trying to meet their needs. Love is saying thank you, please, and other life-giving words. Love is having respect for preferences. Love is other focused. Anger on the other hand comes from self focus and wanting what you want, when you want it, and your way. You can't really control other people's anger, but you can control how you love. Love doesn't breed anger, nor does it let itself be angered easily.