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Today’s Truth

“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” (John 3:17 NIV).

Friend to Friend

“You are not included.”

Well, this isn’t exactly what the woman said to me, but it sure sounded that way. Worst of all, this wasn’t the first time she excluded me and, as I’d learn later that day, it wouldn’t be the last, either.

Grr. When I got home, I thought, “I hate that lady.”

Certainly, my mind wanted to carry on with horrible thoughts about her…and why she acts rude…and how she must be an unhappy person…and that she is thoughtless and careless, but…God.

God stopped me. He stopped me from condemning this woman in my mind.

“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” (John, 3:17 NIV).

This verse gets me to thinking…if Jesus came — not to condemn, but to save, shouldn’t I come that way too? What would it look like for me to save my judgment so I could love, rather than hate?

If Jesus came to save me, not holding me to every past mistake, shouldn’t I also consider forgiving this passive-aggressive woman too?

If Jesus saved me from insecurity, shouldn’t I let go of her insecurity and actually pray for her?

Doing this was going to be hard: either the Word of God would take hold of my heart or bitterness and anger would. What would I do? Certainly, I didn’t want a bitter root to grow within me. The only person that hurts is me.

I decided to forgive her.

Why? Because she who has been forgiven of much loves much. . .

Isn’t that what Jesus said about the woman who anointed His feet at Simon the Pharisee’s dinner party? “Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little” (Luke 7:47 NIV).

When I read those words, I realize that I am the “her” in “her many sins have been forgiven.” Therefore, I am the “her” who should be showing great love.

I’ve been insecure – and God chose to love and stick with me.

I’ve made mistakes — and God chose to teach me along the way and grow me.

I’ve wanted to take things out on others – and God still wants me.

In so many ways, I am this woman too. Yet, looking back, it wasn’t the condemnation or unforgiveness that changed me – it was grace and love of God that transformed me.I want to extend love to her the same way Jesus did, to me.If I’ve learned one thing over my short life, it is this: We are most free, when we are free of anger, bitterness, jealousy and/or resentment. Why? Because we can love wholeheartedly. When we clear out ungodly emotions we make room for God’s goodness, hope, and restoration to move in. We want to minister from a pure heart, rather than an angry one.

It’s not easy; I know. It is a humbling experience to let go and to let God, but at the same time, it is exponentially worth it emotionally and spiritually.

Who have you been judging, accusing or condemning? Who might you need to stop hating so you can start loving them from the heart of God?

Let’s Pray

Father, I do feel hurt. I do not like the way I have been treated. It feels unfair and not right. I ask You to help me to love those who have hurt me. I ask You to ready me to forgive, even when it feels hard. Will You hold my hand through this process?
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn 

Acknowledge your pain. Bring it to God. Ask for his grace to forgive.
Now that you have forgiven, how can you proceed forward in a new way?
What has it meant to you when others have forgiven you for something you have done wrong? 

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© 2021 by Kelly Balarie. All rights reserved.

9 Responses to “Are Your Feelings Hurt Too?”

  1. Alexis says:

    Thanks for posting this. Before reading it I was contemplating cheating on my husband who has hurt me a lot. I don’t want to follow this post it’s hard but God has spoken to me through it. Please pray for my marriage restored and myself that I would have the strength to forgive my husband and not cheat

  2. Carrie says:

    You don’t know how much I needed this today. I have THE most difficult student that I have had in my 22 year teaching career. She exactly knows how to push my buttons. She won’t accept the love I have to give and has pushed me so far that I GREATLY dislike her. Yesterday, it reach a boiling point and I sent her out into the hall so that I could cool off. (I haven’t sent a kid into the hall in YEARS.) I even told my assistant principal, “I don’t know what the Lord is trying to teach me in all this.” Well, this devotional is EXACTLY what the Lord is teaching me with her. To love those that are difficult to love. To Love and not to condemn. To love and not to judge. To love and not to hate. Lord, please help me love this student, help me heal this relationship and turn things around. Help me show God’s love in my classroom. Amen.

  3. Heather says:

    This devotional hit home!! I struggle so much with being nice and praying for the one that has hurt me most in my life. For 21 years my mother in law has been passive aggressive to me. She’s controlling and intimidating that my husband won’t even stand up to her in my defense which hurts even more. We rarely argue but when when do it’s about her. My solution has been to remove her as much as possible from my life. She never reaches out to me unless it’s absolutely necessary. My husband keeps in touch with her which is good as long as I don’t have to. She has cause me a lot of anxiety over the years and I’m just done!! I know this is a unhealthy way to live. My dislike for her is so much that’s it’s hard to pray for her.

  4. Terry says:

    Just what I needed this morning. I am feeling like I am the only person working really hard in my office. I manage 8 people and it seems like they have time to talk and chat and are always behind on their work while I am overloaded with work and responsibility. It feels some days like no one cares but me. Thank you for this message this morning. It hit really hard this morning as I start my day in my office. Thank you for reminding me that God has forgiven me and even when I want to lash out at those who are not contributing much, God says to love them.

  5. Carol says:

    Great devotional, this am!
    Passive aggression is a tool the enemy uses against us to pull us into a self-centered life cycle, of hurt an sadness. He wants any form of doubt/insecuity to take our eyes off of our Savior.
    My prayer, when I feel this way, is “Father, please help me…forgive me, when I get holiness wrong…I only want to honor you, for the loving kindness you have shown me. Thank you for knowing me in my human mistakes. Help me to be more like Jesus, ans less like me, in Jesus name, I pray…Amen”
    Bless you Kelly, for your continuing ministry.

  6. Lil says:

    Thank. you some one in my family blocked and unfriended me on a social media site. I have no clue why…and have chosen not to ask but turn it over to God. Today was wonderful for me because I want to forget about it and move on but maybe I needed to forgive first. Thanks Kelly, you are an amazing leader.

  7. Kelly says:

    Hi Terry,
    It can be so hard to love those who are hard to deal with – I completely understand. I am thankful that your heart is receptive and willing (which is half-the-battle). You are an amazing woman of the Lord to be willing to forgive and to love. God sees this. He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. So much love! Kelly

  8. Carol, what a beautiful prayer. I believe God must love your transparency and authenticity before Him. Isn’t it amazing how he is not thrown off by our need for help? May you be blessed in all your ways.

    Love,
    Kelly

  9. GENEVIEVE says:

    Years ago, someone shared with me that they hated people.I couldn’t understand that then. I’ve since had experiences unfortunately which helps me identify with the individual. Ive hated, and said I can’t stand people. Im encouraged and challenged today just as the song says, lead me in your love to those around me. Love through me. Thank you for sharing.

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