I’ve struggled with hate and forgiveness for the longest.
I’ve asked God how to forgive and listened to sermons on forgiveness, but still struggled. Struggled letting go of all this hate within my heart. All of this hate within me.
I was taking a nap yesterday at a family members house and believe God revealed something to me. For many people, including myself, we struggle forgiving and letting go of hate because we struggle letting go of the past.
I know that sounds simple, but let me elaborate.
In this life I want respect. I believe that the more suffering I endure, the more others will not only respect me, but have sympathy for me due to the suffering I endured in the past and maybe even present too. So I sometimes want to suffer, believing that others will respect me because of it. As crazy as that may sound.
But growing up that is what I believe I desired most – respect.
I wanted my step-father and kids at school to not just leave me alone and stop bullying me, but respect me. So as I saw kids being respected growing up for the tough neighborhoods they grew up in or tough upbringings they had, I wanted to latch on to that. Though I never really grew up in a tough neighborhood, I believed I had a tough upbringing to a degree. So I held on to that in hopes that others would respect me because of it.
Not just respect me, but be my friend.
But as I got older I struggled gaining respect from others. It always felt like someone had it worse than me. So I struggled with a hate to a great degree because I wasn’t and still am not getting the respect that I truly desire in life. No matter how much suffering I endure.
It wasn’t until I asked God one day how to obtain respect from Him that my whole mind and life changed, I would say.
When I asked God how to obtain respect from Him verses the world, He told me that I could obtain it by fulfilling His Greatest Commandment:
That was deep. Really deep!
But of coarse my heart, soul, mind and ability to find strength is pretty damaged due to my past and I struggle with hate and forgiveness because of it.
So then God gave me another gem.
If I keep replaying my past and how badly I was hurt by the bullies at school and at home, I will struggle forgiving. Because it is as if I am holding myself captive or hostage to my past knowing good and well I am long past that point in my life now.
Not only that, but by continuing to replay my past hurts to hopefully gain respect and sympathy from others, I am not only holding myself captive and holding on to hate, but I am rooting my identity in my past.
Which is why I struggle moving forward and letting go.
The more I say I was beat in my past by so & so or bullied in the past by this person, I am holding on to hate for that person whether I know it or not. Remembering the hurt and not letting go of that chain that is crippling, damaging and may ultimately destroy me in the end is a scary thought. It’s time to let go of the chain.
So that I believe is where Jesus needs to come in.
I mean He did go through far worse than all of us anyways, right? And He was able to forgive. If He can, why can’t I?
Jesus needs to be where are story starts over in life, I believe. Where we let everything go on Him and start anew. Letting go of our past and past hurts, embrace our new life in Jesus and move forward. I believe then we will not only be free of hate within our hearts, but we will have a new identity in Christ.
That is what I believe.
Because honestly, trying to get the world to respect you is just WAY TOO MUCH work and in my opinion not worth it when you do it the worlds way.
So let’s all do it God’s way and earn our respect through Him.
I say we let go of our suffering, traumatic memories and let Jesus know that we want a new life in Him. We want to be born again and have our lives start over from where He comes in. So that when suffering comes into our lives, we will always know who is by our side to help us not just get through those tough times, but forgive those who mistreat us.
That being Jesus.
Let’s all embrace our new identity in Him, give Him our past so that He can grant us our future. But also, embrace Jesus so that we can fully live out God’s Greatest Commandment for us all to our fullest in loving God with all our heart, soul, mind and our strength. Along with loving our neighbor as we love ourself.
I believe we need Jesus to do all of that to our greatest ability.
How can we love others in the way God wants us to love if we don’t know love itself?
Sex is not love. God is love.