Going for Broke
Lately I have been finding myself burdened by the effects of current events on relationships. The isolation forced upon us by the pandemic has challenged families, friends and communities. People are finding themselves facing depression and loneliness in growing numbers due to COVID restrictions, closing of schools, etc. The concerns over racism have caused deep division in people's lives. The political dynamics present in our nation have caused deep damage to relationships where we feel the need to stand our ground or opinion. Sadly these things are doing damage to the hearts and lives of so many people. Throughout our society hearts and lives are being deeply impacted. As a result I have been praying for these concerns and asking God what He has to say. Here is what I felt Him say this past Sunday as we gathered for church.
"First I called you child. Allow me to strip away every other label. Let me take you back all the way to being only my child. Allow the weight of those things that have been piled on your shoulders to be shifted. Allow them to fall to the ground. Allow the freedom I offer to remove them with an anointing healing balm of love. I love you. I LOVE you. I LOVE YOU."
I wept as I wrote down what I felt He was saying because it hit me to the depths of my heart. Why do we allow anything but God to determine who we are and what we do? Why is it that we often find it easier to break ties than to love? Why is it we justify the breaking of relationship? Please don't misunderstand me, I know full well that there are times when we need to walk away from abusive circumstances. I also know we can lump a lot of things under that "justifiable" reason to go for broke in relationships rather than ask God to show us the way to have relationships restored. It is hard work to love. It is not about how we feel, it is about a choice made regardless of circumstances.
It is complicated to set aside hurts, offenses and feelings and allow God to show us how to love by choice. As much as I wish there were some easy path the truth is that God doesn't grant us the permission to break relationship. We are to be like Him and He sent His own Son to unite us in relationship. Granted it does take a choice on both sides of a fracture to allow real healing but the fact remains we are accountable for our heart's reaction and choices regardless of the other person's. If our relationship post offense is not as strong or stronger than it was before we have not truly allowed humility, grace and forgiveness to do its work. If the other party is unwilling to allow God to mend the relationship we can only control our hearts response. However we can evaluate ourselves by weighing our heart reaction to that person. If we are real and honest with ourselves we know when there is a catch in our hearts toward someone. We should allow God to bring us to a place where we can truly love that person without reserve. We should love them in the same way God loved us; freely and unconditionally and based completely on our choice not their actions. If we are going to go for broke let it be that we allow God to break our hearts for what breaks His. If we are going to go for broke let it be our pride, opinions, and hurt that is broken not relationship with one another.