The Decision

June 20, 2015

There are moments when you find yourself completely shocked, unprepared and scared because what you thought to be true isn’t true at all. What you expected is just a reminder of what you have lost. Your trust has been betrayed, and the pain that you feel is unbearable.

Forgiveness seems like an insurmountable obstacle, and revenge appears to be the best option.

And I think if we are honest with ourselves, we have all felt this: the feeling of frustration and hurt and pain. It’s overwhelming. You cared for them, for that person. You trusted them. You believed that they had your best interest at heart. You never imagined the betrayal that ensued. For me, that’s the scary part, the fact that you trusted who they claimed to be. And honestly, it would be so easy, understandable even, to get revenge and expose the true extent of their character. Yet, that still small voice echoes in my head: forgive.

You cannot let the actions of others dictate who you are and where you are going.

Charles R. Swindoll once said, “I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.” You cannot control the actions of others. You cannot control their intention, but you can control your response. You can control how you deal with what life has thrown at you.

Does forgiveness come naturally? Are we naturally programmed to forgive and forget? It is human nature to desire revenge and justice, and to want to obliterate a reputation that so deserves to be exposed. But what I have found is that all of the hate and the hurt and the revenge profits nothing.

Whenever I am contemplating on how to handle a situation, I turn my attention to the life of Christ.

Yes, I understand that Jesus was perfect and faultless, however, he was presented with all of the same temptations and situations that we encounter on a daily basis. His life is the perfect example of how we must conduct ourselves in trying circumstances. When I think of betrayal, my mind wanders to Peter. Peter and Jesus had a relationship. He walked with Jesus, he traveled with him, he did ministry with him. Jesus invested in him, he cared so deeply for Peter. He wanted to see him change the world. For three years Peter was His constant companion. But we find that during the time frame of Jesus’ trial and crucifixion, Peter betrays Jesus. At the time when trust and commitment mattered the most, His confidant, His disciple, His number one supporter, this man that Jesus had poured his time and energy into betrays Him. In fact Peter denies his relationship with Jesus. Not once, but three times. How is it that someone who walked and talked and gleaned from Jesus, could bear to deny him? Yet, Jesus forgave. He continued to love Peter and invest in him, despite the fact that he denied knowing Him.

In our own quest for revenge we often lose sight of who we are.

We forget that we are imperfect. We forget that somewhere along the line, someone has forgiven us and given us mercy when we were undeserving.

I never want to forget that I am the product of a merciful God. Regardless of the hurt that we have experienced, we must choose to be good to people despite all.

We must choose to forgive in the face of betrayal.

Just as “His grace is sufficient for me,” it will also be sufficient for that person who has wounded me. We must choose to forgive.

“How blessed are those who are merciful, because it is they who will receive mercy.” {Matthew 5:7}

By choosing forgiveness, you allow God to deal with that person and to heal you. Make that your decision.