Friday, August 19, 2011
God can heal a broken heart, but He has to have all the pieces.
It is bad enough when a stranger or foe betrays you, but when it is someone you believed to be a close and trusted friend or partner, it is especially hurtful. You would not expect to be hurt so badly from someone you thought you could trust. So you are left in disbelief and unbelievable pain.
Anyone who has experienced betrayal in a relationship knows how difficult it is to recover from such an experience. The person you thought you could trust and count on is no longer the person you believed them to be. You may wonder what had happened.
There are many reasons that cause people to betray one another. Sometimes they are very deliberate and intended to hurt the other person. And sometimes they are consequences of choices that are made with no intention of doing any harm to anyone. Looking out for one’s own best interests can cause some people to disregard relationships they once valued. They may feel the relationship is in the way or not as important anymore. Feelings change. And as feelings change so do one’s actions and choices. An individual that feels their needs are not being met in a relationship might feel that the relationship is no longer important or worth investing in. Therefore, they might seek to get their needs met elsewhere. This changes the relationship. Eventually, it grows apart and opportunities for betrayal emerge.
In emotional trauma, we try to make sense of our pain. We can be tempted to respond to this rejection in unhealthy ways. We can develop a contempt for ourselves, a contempt for others, a contempt for God, or a combination of these three.
In self-contempt, we take full responsibility of the failure of the relationship. We wonder, what is it about me that makes my loved one to leave me? Doubts of our own beliefs, appeareance, personality, or ability start to emerge. We might think that there is something so repulsive in us that no one can love us. In the long run, this will decrease self esteem and confidence. Contempt for others is another response we use to make sense of our pain. It holds the other party as fully responsible for the dynamics in relationship. We view them as evil and when people asked us, we’ll say “ It’s all their fault”. We might put distance to others and avoid close relationship as we believe that no one can be trusted. Contempt for God blames Him for our pain. We reason that if He is in control of our lives and He loves us, why didn’t He protect us from such hurtful experience? Those who have been rejected or abused by parents as children, may tend to blame the sovereign God for their sufferings. Feeling of rejection, discouragement and loss may cause us to doubt that God loves us.
At first, these contempts for ourselves, others, and God works. It helps maintain the façade that we have everything under control because we assume we know the “reason” of the pain. We then go on with our lives, fixing what we can about ourselves and keeping everyone (including God) at a distance. We refuse to believe that we are not in control and we may be hurt again.
We are afraid, because to love again we must risk being vulnerable and admit that we do care and admire, no matter how hard we try to numb our hearts. When we are at this end of the rope, contempt no longer works for us.
Instead, we can choose a better way to deal with life, letting others get close to us and learning to trust again. For me, the first step is through the process of grieving. Grief will lead us down the path to restore our faith, hope, and opening ourselves to love. Grieving is important because it provokes us to cry out to God, and thereby to open ourselves to His healing. Psalm 34:17 says” The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.”. Jesus is the ultimate source of comfort and protection. He is our refuge and strength (Psalm 61:3).
When we grieve, we face the truth that we have been deeply hurt and there is something lacking, a hole in our hearts. It may not feel like it at first, but healing begins when we face the disappointment of the loss of our hopes and dreams. We usually tend to avoid our feeling of sadness because we afraid it will consume us, and we will never find comfort. But the truth is this, openness is the start of healing process. If we act in faith and throw ourselves on the Lord in full dependence and cry out to Him, He will be the rock that saves us from overwhelming waves of pain (Psalm 34:18). God’s comfort gives us hope- a renewed hope for brighter future and for love.
Life without hope is not worth living. Romans 15:13 says that God will fill us with hope. The process of growth is difficult because it engages us in agonizing choice between faith and doubt. When doubt comes, we will be tempted to give up. Our previous comtempt will seduce us as we fight through intense emotion of hope and love for the future. As ironic as it may seems, resisting contempt and entering into this dark valley of emotion is the way we see our faith deepen.
When we see our faith deepen and we are reminded of how God is working in our lives, hope grows. Hope motivates us to love, which is the most important element of a Christian (1 Cor 13:13). Love will open our hearts to hear the truth about our strengths and shortcomings (1 Cor 13:6). Love will soften our hearts for others, cultivate forgiveness, and help us face the beams in our eyes before we look at the specks in the eyes of our brothers or sisters (Mat 7:3-5).
We can’t fight this battle alone. We need to talk to strong Christian family or friends who keep reminding us of God’s love for us. It is important to have friends who will give us freedom and support as we grapple with doubts and emotion. Fill our minds with the truth and promises of God that will strenfthen us. Unhealthy responses to pain inhibit a life of joy, peace, and love. But responding to pain in a healthy manner, by honestly crying out to God, can strengthen our character, deepen our faith, and allow God to change and heal our hearts. And let’s embrace the truth that God is up to something good in our lives, even in the midst of heartbreak (Romans 8:2)
Col 3:13 says "Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others."
Bitterness comes when you forget God’s grace, which is showered on you each day. This kind of situation can make you bitter, but instead, be joyful because it is also an opportunity. Our plans are broken because God, together with us, will build a bigger and better ones. The heavens open wide for the man that makes God’s word his guiding light.(Psalms 119:130)
Promise of God: Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you,all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
This post is dedicated for HR.
Posted by Kezia Gusmawan