Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart. – I Peter 1:22, AMPC
I’ve made a lot of progress through the years in forgiveness, overcoming bitterness, and forgetting other very negative things from past toxic relationships, especially concerning my daughter’s father (the ex) and his wife.
“We should be able to come to help you guys move,” I told her, very happily helping them do some things in their new house to prepare for them to live there. They’d been married about 10 months, after being close friends for 9 years (They met at church camp! God is so good!)
“Hmm,” she said. “The more the merrier.”
It didn’t take me long to realize what was unsaid: that not only would her husband’s parents be there to help, but her dad and his wife.
The negative thoughts I had were much lighter than in the past. I did not even react on the outside but continued stripping the old shelf lining.
I wanted to help my daughter, of course, but although all of us had changed through the years, by God’s grace and help. The LORD had truly delivered me from intense bitterness, hatred, unforgiveness, and hurt toward my daughter’s father, and his wife. My husband and I had even prayed for them and their marriage through the years.
Still, although they said they were Believers in Christ, and I wished them well (even taking Communion for them and asking God to deliver and heal them and their marriage, etc.), I didn’t care if I ever saw them again.
In fact, I would be very happy if I never saw them again till Heaven–when all the past would be washed away; when I’d have no memory of any wrong thing ever happening and would see them only as Christ did–if I even encountered them in Heaven at all.
Hmm. What to do? I thought. I just told her that we’d be there. Then I remembered I’d actually already scheduled an online conference with a friend in Brazil, as well as planned a lunch date with another friend. Lunch dates had been extremely rare the past year or more.
The LORD knows all things. Jesus, Who was and is forever perfect and always walked in love and did only what His Father God told Him to and said only what God said, totally understands our feelings, knows our pasts and knows our hearts. He is so good!
As He told me once, “I will help you if you will just ask Me.” HALLELUJAH!
So He helped me, of course! He is the Master of Tact!
“Sweetie, I just remembered I have a couple of appointments that day, but I can come Friday and help you move boxes. I’ve moved many times by just using my car for most of the stuff–remember?”
She smiled. “I know, Mom. Let’s wait and see what the weather does, OK? I’ll let you know.”
She is such a doll. She had experienced much toxicity from those same people and the LORD had done a wonderful healing of her heart–and mine. I’d been divorced from that very wrong relationship since she was a year old, and for many years, it was just her and me. I was proud of the mature young woman she’d become, and how the LORD had also graced her to forgive and forget and overcome, and love those who’d treated her so wrongly with the love of Christ!
He truly is the Healer and Restorer. He understands all things and knows just how to handle every situation if we will just lean on Him.
I also decided that day that, with His overcoming Grace to help me see only the present and the future, even if I had to encounter those I didn’t care to be around in order to show love for my daughter by helping her, I would do it anyway.
It would all be all right, for my Daddy God would be with me, and He would help both me and them to focus on getting the job done–helping my daughter and her husband.
God had truly delivered me and, after much trouble and trials and mess through the years, I could tell the “mommy bear claws” had been extracted by the blood of the Lamb and the mercy of God.
Blessed be the LORD, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever, as Psalm 107:1-2 say!
It is, after all, the Grace of the LORD Jesus Christ Who gives us the ability to look beyond the carnality of ourselves and others and walk in Love. Love “keeps no record of wrongs,” as I Corinthians 13 says in the passage of verses 4-8.
I also like Philippians 4:19, which states that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Hallelujah!
9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to test and prove what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.…Philippians 1:9-11, —Berean Study Bible
So if you’re struggling, know this: There is nothing in your life that Jesus has not already experienced. He is your High Priest Who totally understands you–He gets you! He will help you. If you have received Him as your Savior and LORD by asking Him to forgive you of your sins and to come to live in your heart, then He is with you forever. He is your best friend, your heavenly Lawyer, your Strength, your very Life! He will help you overcome and do what is right, to walk in love and bring glory to Him and the Father.
If you have not received Him, today is your day! Asking Jesus into your heart will be the very best life-changing thing you can ever do! He loves you, gave His life for you, and does not condemn you. He is not mad at you but at wrongdoing! He is eager and waiting to receive you and help you start living your best life ever! He is the King of kings, but very humble and loving, and kind.
What are you waiting for?
If He already is your Savior and LORD, congratulations, for you are already part of the Eternal Royal Family! Now ask Him to fill you afresh with Himself and teach you, even more, to walk and talk as Him, to love His Word, and walk in greater victory and fulfillment than ever. He is that good! He will help you!