I got hurt the other day.
Someone turned down my organizing services and they really needed my help. I watched how my heart responded (privately), and I almost missed God’s gift of His Presence, Personality and Power in the circumstance. After they hung up, it took me about five minutes to understand what God was doing for me in this situation.
Here is what I discovered. In responding to this person, I had two choices:
1. When someone hurts me, I can react in anger (to protect myself from actually feeling the hurt). I can “wipe them off of my list” and just move on. I don’t want to feel the hurt from them or for them. I want to just “get out of the circumstance”.
Here’s the second choice:
2. When someone hurts me, and I respond with empathy, I “write them on my list”. I pray for them, feel for them and with them, enter into their world and see from their eyes what they are experiencing. I embrace their reaction as a time of learning about myself and them. I learn how I can be redemptive in this situation. I want to get what God wants me to “get out of this circumstance”.
God does not want us to react to something with our old nature. He wants us to respond to Someone with our new nature.
Again, God doesn’t want us to just get out of the circumstance, He wants us to get out of the circumstance what He is teaching us.
When someone hurts you, I can guarantee that God has a jewel from his Kingdom that he wants to impart to you as a result of this encounter. Maybe it is growing in compassion and empathy. Maybe it is learning the skill of saying “no”, setting boundaries and being honest. Or maybe it is just being patient, persevering and forgiving with that person as they find their own way through this circumstance.
Don’t miss the upgrade, the godly characteristic, that God wants you to “get out of this circumstance”.