The paper glowed red, smoke spun spiral wisps up into the air, and black charred bits flaked off and fell to the ground.
Was this it? All the years of hurt, the pain, the sorrow, the silent tears cried alone at night…
The dare said to list all the ways he’s wronged her in the past, and all the things she’s done to hurt him. She was to go to him and apologize for what she has done, but her hurt has to be cast aside and burned?
What kind of one-sided deal is this? This isn’t one-flesh, this is one person bearing the brunt of the marriage, right?
But not quite.
Here’s the scary sad truth…that level of bitterness and resentment? It’s directly proportional to the level of understanding of grace you’ve received from Jesus Himself.
The need to make someone pay, make someone understand the depth breadth and width of how he’s hurt you – that’s the enemy at work.
And I know what that feels like.
It’s the voice in your head that says, “see how he likes being treated that way…” but it never helps.
It’s the anger that spills over into all of our interactions anyway, because revenge and holding onto hurts is just poison for our own souls.
Saying to Him, “I hate that this all happened to me! I hate that I still hurt over these things. I want it to stop. I want to know You so deeply that I can not only forgive him and stop keeping this list of wrongs, but move forward in a healthy way when he hurts me next time.”
Because there will be a next time.
There’s always a next time.
And a woman who has healthfully laid down her pain for God to deal with, laid down her need to be right, laid down her will and accepted, no embraced, that the God of the universe not only knows about these things, but allowed them to occur so she could learn to love understands that she needs to let Him have them back.
She needs His help in forgiving.
And then she needs to move forward.
And so, when he hurts her again, she can say, “I am hurting. I feel (FEELING) that you (FACT without judgment)” ie: “I am hurting. I feel ignored and alone in our marriage when we agreed on a course of action with our son’s birthday present and you purchased something else instead.”
And he’s left to deal with that. With God as his teacher.
I know by the time you get to Dare 27 in The Respect Dare, many of you actually are in that place – especially having seen it modeled in Dare 18, and deepening your relationship with God to the point that this makes such beautiful sense…
But I also know there are women who still don’t get it. They just aren’t there yet in their journey.
Some have just read the book and not actually done the dares, saying, “This is total abuse-inspiring patriarchy.”
WE know that’s not true, but still…
So I wish that I had also said all that in Dare 27. I know many of you get it anyway, but still, I wish it were there.
I’m glad you are on the journey. And I have a small announcement that I’m a bit jazzed about… I have a new book out.
It’s the book we’ll use in the video version of Daughters of Sarah. Our first beta pilot group starts next week. Prayers appreciated! We’re drowning in details with the technology set up… and of course there are problems. At any rate, I hope you’ll let me know what you think about the book.
And if you have a few minutes – we’d LOVE your feedback on the TIPS articles. Survey is here.
Love to you,