I've said before how you can tell a lot about a person by what others say about them. Initially, I said that in context to the relationship they have with that person... but recently, I was faced with thinking... what about when the others have been hurt? What would you say about someone else if they hurt you? What would they say if you hurt them?
Not long ago, a friendship of mine ended. A friend that I deeply care for is no longer a friend. It's the result of mistakes and hurtful words on both ends. And from that, I'm learning how to forgive all over again. I'm learning the process of letting go all over again. I'm learning what it means to pick up the pieces all over again. And no, it is never easy no matter how many times I do learn it.
Some things were said about me publicly... and some things were said about me privately to those close to me. And as much as I want to fight back and scream that no... that's not true.. or no, that's not the whole story... I find myself being silent. And yes I have vented.. yes I have cried. Yes, I have fought desperately the urge to blame myself... yes, I have replayed situations in my head trying to figure out what went wrong.. and yes, I find myself in moments of sadness over what has been lost.
But I still believe in the God of second chances because He's given me thousands. I believe that love still prevails. I believe that God knows the hearts of each side and is completely aware of everything. And I believe that He still redeems and restores. Because I believe, I am learning what it means to lay it all down at the foot of the cross.. because if I don't, anger and bitterness will root its way in. If I believe Jesus is who He says He is, I cannot have room in my heart for those things.
So I choose love. I choose to love even though I've been hurt. I choose to forgive even though I've been hurt. And I choose to have hope that these things will one day be extended out to me. I may have lost that friend.. but God still loves us both. God still offers grace to us both. And I believe He has the authority to guide each of our steps in picking up the pieces that have been shattered in both of our lives. I believe He still carries us both and has a plan for each of us..
So now I wait.. and now I trust.. and now I start over. I don't know what the future holds for me... but now, I choose to trust the One who does.
He still loves me.
He still loves her.
He still loves those we've hurt.
He still loves those who've hurt us.