One-sided relationships hurt, alot.
Tonight I had a bout of spiritual depression. I’ll explain. It suddenly came all over me with a mixture of feelings. I felt despaired, angry, annoyed, proud and more. Why? I suddenly felt that I was the only one that worked for those around me. It seemed to me that my relationships were one-sided, they were all about me working hard for them. I felt hard-done by – I had put so much into some friendships and had nothing back. I felt offended. My life suddenly seemed a lie, a place where the buck stopped in my court.
It was heart-rendering after my mind whizzed through friendships that really weren’t friendships under this new understanding – I had done all the work. I had lifted up the friendship for all those years and as soon as I let go, the friendship ended, it was over. It seemed as though I was the only one who cared about others. I’d worked so hard for their good and what do I get? Rejection, denial, and hate.
After 20 minutes of being in this state of depression, it suddenly hit me. God was telling me loud and clear. The way I felt about these relationships, was the way that He felt when I disobeyed Him, when I denied Him time, when I go away from Him. That feeling of sadness, when you see friends you’d worked so hard for leave you, is the way that God feels (although in a much larger scale) when you break your covenant yet again with Him every time you sin.
It’s true, that sometimes we work hard on relationships only to see them topple when we stop all the work. Then consider God, who kept His side of the relationship – even up to the death of His Son, His one and only, the one He dearly loved. Consider God whom we disobey and turn away from every day of our lives. Consider the anguish He feels when we seek other ways out of our problems. Consider the pain He feels when we deny time with Him in prayer and study of His Word.
Let ‘s then, and me in particular, remember the pain that we feel when a friend denies us that this is, even if only in a small way, the same as God feels when we turn away from Him. It’s easy for us to become bitter of these things, but imagine if God did. Imagine the consequences – there’d be no hope of repentance.
These words said by Jesus in Matthew 8:10 provide a challenge:
Let’s remember these words, we should continue on not looking for a reward but remembering how much God has done for us even though we still and will, until we are glorified, turn our backs on Him. How much patience God has! How much love, grace and mercy He has!