Monday, April 9, 2012

Ever Been Betrayed? Betrayal and Forgiveness (Part 2)

Psalm 55

So, David has been betrayed and in the last post I talked about how our first step when we are in the wake of being betrayed is to cry out to God.  We most likely will have to cry out numerous times because we don't really get betrayed by people who aren't close to us, do we?  A very practical way to cry out to the Lord is through a prayer journal.  At my house the only risk I run of having someone read my journal now is Morgan.  In fact she even took one of them to school.  Rod couldn't be any less interested in reading my journals.  My little sister has been instructed upon my death to burn those things.  Good grief I have the last 14 years of my life poured out in honesty to the Lord! 

So, in verses 2-3 we see where he is troubled and distraught.  Rejection, betrayal, loss, all of that cause such pain don't they?  The girl who gave of herself and lost her virginity to a guy that promised her his undying love and devotion "if only" yet she sleeps with him and he is never to be heard from again.  The child who instead of receiving love and a home to be nurtured and flourished in is abused.  The engagement that was broken.  The friend who betrayed your confidence.  The husband or wife that has never loved you or kept their commitment to the Lord.  The person who cheated in their marriage.  The mom or dad you never got the approval from.  You get the picture and whatever it is you are distraught.  So what is one thing that you want to do just like David wanted to do when a "bomb" of sorts has hit you or your house and left you in an emotional upheaval want to run!  Just like him I want leave the mountainous situation and find refuge somewhere far from the storm because after all, how could this be happened to me.  Like a nightmare you want to pinch yourself and wake up and it all be over.  He wants to flat out escape the situation.  Hey, some situations God is not calling you to escape but to bear up under the load.  I am not talking about staying in an abusive relationship or anything of that nature.  Yet, through whatever trial has beset us there are times where we are called to flat out endure the thing which in some greek renderings can mean the ability to bear up under a load.  I think about the main verse prompting these posts which is verse 22 and some loads we bear but we are only able to because we have released the weight of them to the Lord.  So he wants to flee away and fly off like a dove or find shelter from the storm raging against him.  He wants that undisturbed peace that has now been upset.  Here's where the rubber meets the road.  Will we bury our heads in the sand with our trials?  Will we love eyes wide-open and do the hard thing?  Or will we flee and cave to bitterness and a calloused heart?  Which one will it be?

Here is where it gets good in the description of the human emotion of the heart. 

 4 My heart is in anguish within me;
the terrors of death assail me.
5 Fear and trembling have beset me;
horror has overwhelmed me.

You can't know what he is articulating here unless you have done some real live living.  If you don't know this part maybe it will lend you some insight into what someone else is going through.

His heart is in anguish within him.  Check out what the word for anguish means in the Hebrew (PLEASE STAY WITH ME HERE):  Hiyl: "To turn in a circle, twist, revolve; to writhe, travail (in childbirth), bear a child; to be born; to be afraid, tremble, shake.  The main idea is that of writhing in pain, which is particularly associated with childbirth...also denotes trembling..., suffering torment...experiencing anguish or distress."

Listen, he was betrayed and writhing in pain.  He was travailing over his hurt like one who would travail in childbirth.  When I started to pick apart this passage I began to scroll through memories of things that caused me the most pain.  As far as physical pain goes, hands down, the most pain I have been in on a scale of 1-10 (I hate when they ask you that at the doctor) was when I had meningitis. Yet on a scale of suffering, I have been through a lot and nothing quite hurts like betrayal.  Even the pain of losing a child for me was something I had to grieve and such a nightmare yet there have been hurts so deep that have caused me almost as much pain. 
I thought though how many of us really have no intention of turning our hurts and trials over to the Lord?  You know the person I am talking about.  The one that calls you up for the hundredth time and talks about something that happened 15 or 20 years ago and you can almost taste the bitter gall or smell the smoke from the smoldering pot because they are still living that thing out each time they tell it.  It's the part of the movie where you want to scream MOVE ON!  GET OVER IT!  QUIT BEATING THE DEAD HORSE!!!  WE ARE ALL SICK OF IT!  That is so 1996 DON'T WAST YOUR LIFE!  Yet that bitter root took way and it has sprung up and defiled many just like God's word says.  So, if we are going to guard ourselves from bitterness from that kind of pain David is talking about it is going to have to be intentional and it is going to require work.  It won't be for the faint of heart, because we at times are going to have to work so fervently for a renewed mind.  We are going to have to work it out with the Lord so we don't fall prey to the enemies mixed bag of offenses.  Yet it is going to be a process. 
This verse is what came to mind when I thought of David travailing in childbirth

Isaiah 26:18

New International Version 1984 (NIV1984)

18 We were with child, we writhed in pain,
but we gave birth to wind.
We have not brought salvation to the earth;
we have not given birth to people of the world.
We do not have to let our suffering be in vain.  If we view everything as a cup of suffering that the Lord has allowed to come into our lives we will give birth to something beautiful, something that will strengthen the brethren...yet we will also risk being misunderstood by people who really haven't known that road.  I promise you though I may not be where I need to be with some fresh wounds that the Lord is healing but I would not trade one hurt I have been through because I have come to know the Lord in so many ways that I otherwise would not have fellowshiped so deeply with him.  So let us press on but press through and turn around and pay the enemy back when we are whole enough to do so.  We won't give birth to the wind...
We can limp across the finish line but have done it with some victory and stand with others in the hall of faith and it can be said, "The world was not worthy of them!"  What the enemy meant for harm, God meant for good!
Our testimonies can be instruments that help strengthen the feeble hands and steady the knees that give way as they run their race and we pass the baton able to say our God is faithful and worthy for us to follow!  (to be cont'd)

Isaiah 35:2-4

New International Version 1984 (NIV1984)
2 it will burst into bloom;
it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.
The glory of Lebanon will be given to it,
the splendor of Carmel and Sharon;
they will see the glory of the LORD,
the splendor of our God. 3 Strengthen the feeble hands,
steady the knees that give way;
4 say to those with fearful hearts,
“Be strong, do not fear;
your God will come,
he will come with vengeance;
with divine retribution
he will come to save you.”

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Jennifer said...


I stood a mendicant* of God before His royal throne
And begged Him for a priceless gift, which I could call my own.
I took the gift from out His hand, but as I would depart
I cried, “But Lord, this is a thorn and it has pierced my heart.
This is a strange, a hurtful gift that Thou hast given me.
He said, “My child, I give good gifts and give my best to thee.”
I took it home and though at first the cruel thorn hurt sore;
As long years passed I learned at last to love it more and more.
I learned He never gives a thorn without this added Grace.
He takes the thorn to pin aside the veil which hides His face.

- Martha Snell Nicholson

Jennifer said...

dear jenny,
i stumbled across your blog about a year ago and have been blessed by it. I want you to know I am praying for you. I have also been greatly hurt and betrayed and, like you, wouldn't trade it. It has been the greatest source of pain and hurt, and yet has drawn me closer to my Lord like nothing else ever could. I have lots of really good books I've read (many of them short and simple). Let me know if you want me to pass some titles on to you! I don't know the source of your betrayal, although I'm tempted to guess, but I will just say, a year out in my own journey through the valley of the shadow of death, that you should continue to hang on. Don't give up, or give in, or yield to worldly wisdom. Ps. 37 is my favorite psalm, I feel like it is the Lord's marching orders for me since the beginning of all this for me. When I follow this, things go better. When I depart from those commands, things go badly quickly. Lamentations 3 in the middlish is also special, the part about how His mercies are new every morning. I love verses 24-26. Please don't post my comment, I wanted to communicate with you and didn't see any other way!
In Christ,

jennyhope said...

Jennifer you are my new BFF!! =) Thank you for these precious comments! How do I get in touch with you?

Jennifer said...

pieces from what I have been reading lately =)

Oswald Chambers on Patience:

Patience is not the same as indifference; patience conveys the idea of someone who is tremendously strong and able to withstand all assults. Having the vision of God is the source of patience because it gives us God's true and proper inspiration.......He may give you a time spiritually with no word from Himself at all, just as His Son experienced during HIs time of temptation in the wilderness. When God does that, simply endure , and the power to endure will be there because you see God.

Thomas Brooks on humility:

One property of a humble soul is this; it will quietly bear burdens, and patiently take blows and knocks, and make no noise. A humble soul sees God through all the actions of men. He looks through secondary causes, and sees the hand of God. He looks through to the supreme cause.......Proud hearts may speak of patience, but in the storm it is the humble heart that exercises patience. I am afflicted says the humble soul but it is mercy I am not destroyed. Though I have fallen into a pit, it is free grace that I have not fallen into Hell. God is too just to wrong me, and too gracious to harm me, and therefore I will be still and quiet; let him do what He will with me. Proud souls resist when resisted; they strike when stricken. Cain cries out "My punishment is greater than I can bear!" Remember, it is not easy in affliction and tribulation to hold our peace, yet it is very advantageous. (Voices from the past) (a daily devotional of puritan passages. so very good)

Mary Winslow on Tribulation:

In all His dealings, whatever they may be, there is nothing but the tenderest love towards you, designed to draw you nearer and nearer Himself. Forget not that it is through much tribulation we are to enter the kingdom; but it is all to prepare us for the fuller enjoyment of it when we arrive there. Wait patiently, looking unto Jesus, trusting Him fully for all things, within and without. ...For this very cause we are tried, in order to bring us to a better acquaintance with His tenderness, sympathy and unchanging love. He cares for you. You need not trouble yourself about or load yourself with, early cares. Carry them, as the arise, to Him, and do not set yourself about to manage matters, when He, who has sent the cares, will manage better for you than you can for yourself. Trust Him, wholly trust Him ~Heaven Opened

Praying for you,

Jennifer said...

Word for the day! Or, words.....=)
Praying for you.
This is from one of my current favorite books The Calvary Road by Roy Hession.

"Victorious living and effective soul winning are not the produce of our better selves and hard endeavors, but are simply the fruit of the Holy Spirit. We are not called up on to produce the fruit (that is His job),. but simply to bear it. It is all the time to be HIS fruit. ..At His baptism, John called Jesus The Lamb of God. And the Holy Spirit was manifested at a dove. .... How clear, then, that the Holy Spirit will only come upon us and remain us as we are willing to be as the Lamb on each point on which He will convict us. And nothing is so searching and humbling as to look at the Lamb on His way to Calvary for us and to be shown in how many points we have been unwilling to take the position of a lamb for Him. .....

Look at Him for a moment as the Lamb. He was the simple Lamb. A lamb is the simplest of all creatures. It has no schemes or plans for helping itself - it exists in helplessness and simplicity. Jesus made Himself as nothing for us, and became the simple Lamb. He had no strength of His own, or wisdom of His own, no schemes to get Himself out of difficulties, just simple dependence on the Father all the time. "The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do." But we - how complicated we are! What schemes we have had of helping ourselves and of getting ourselves out of difficulties. What efforts of our own we have resorted to, to live the Christian life and to do God's works, as if we were something and could do something.

He was the Shorn lamb. Willing to be shorn of his rights, his reputation , and every human liberty that was due to Him....He never resisted. A lamb never does. When He was reviled for our sakes, He reviled not again. When he suffered, He threatened not. He never said "you can't treat me like that, don't you know who I am?" But we -ah we! On how many occasions have we been unwilling to be shorn of that which was our right. We were not willing, for His sake to lose that which was our own. We insisted, too that we should be treated with the respect due our position. We resisted, we fought. The Dove had to take His flight from us for we were not willing to be shorn lambs, and we were left w/o peace, hard and unloving.

He was the Silent lamb. "As a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth." Facing the calumnies of men, we read, "He answered nothing. He never defended Himself, nor explained Himself. But we have been anything but silent when others have said unkind or untrue things about us. Our voices have been loud in self-defense and self-vindication, and there has been anger in our voices. We have excused ourselves, when we should have admitted frankly, our wrong. On every such occasion, the Dove had to take His flight and withdraw His peace and blessing from our hearts b/c we were not willing to be the silent lamb.

He was also the Spotless lamb. Not only did nothing escape His lips, but there was nothing in His heart but love for those who had sent him to the cross. There was no resentment towards them, no grudges, no bitterness....He was willing to suffer it in meekness for us. But what resentment and bitterness have not we had in our hearts - toward this one and that one, and over so much less than what they did to Jesus. Each reaction left a stain on our hears, and the Dove had to fly away because we were not willing to bear it and forgive it for Jesus' sake."

~The Calvary Road by Roy Hession

jennyhope said...

Jen, no lie I am having a really hard time w the new blogger layout and can't figure out how to remove the comment u didn't want on here. I didn't even mean to publish it. You are a huge encouragement.