I had a rough day recently.
I unexpectedly became the recipient of some pretty harsh criticism from someone whom I would have expected the complete opposite response from….seeing as I had worked hard to help them when they needed it. Their comments caught me off-guard, and my first response was one of :
Like seriously? I just put forth effort to assist you in your time of need, and you’re going to express anger towards me for something that had absolutely NOTHING to do with me?!
But after my initial angry response dissipated (I’ve never been one to hold a grudge), I was left feeling hurt, unappreciated and devalued……and unfortunately, these emotions lingered for a bit longer as I reflected on past similar occasions. Alas, it is often those who are trusted who are in the position to hurt you the most. And I tend to have a big heart, which can make me an easy target. But the incident in question, felt like the breaking point – and I honestly just wanted to say “F it, no more being nice, or giving, or kind to people who don’t appreciate you & probably wouldn’t think twice to reciprocate!”, followed by some act to display my new “I’ma Do Me!” mentality:
But then I happened to look down at my wrist and the tattoo that I’d gotten a few months ago precisely for situations like this one, of 3:16 (for John 3:16) and an infinity symbol as a reminder of God’s never ending love. That visual cue, along with a chat with my Moms, reinforced what my response should always be when I’m mistreated, misjudged, or misunderstood. Quite simply, I’m to demonstrate love…..no matter what. And not the temporal “I’ll love you if you love me back” type of love, but the relentless “there’s nothing you can do to stop me from loving you” kind of love……that love is hard to maintain, because it requires stepping outside of our feelings and what we feel we deserve, and instead putting the other person (even in their wrongness) first. And that kind of love has to be rooted in God.
So yeah, earlier I was supremely pissed off & hurt. But now, I’m like:
And with no apology necessary! Now, this isn’t to say that I won’t be challenged in this area ever again. But for this round, the scoreboard is looking like Walking-in-Love Angie:1, Wanting-to-Curse-You-Out Angie: 0! My love walk will continue to be a “work in progress”, but I’m trusting that God’s got my back every step of the way. If you’re feeling challenged in this area at all, suppress that desire to go all Mortal Kombat on someone (even if they deserve it) and instead be encouraged by this amazing song. Have a great Hump Day!