Today I did something that was very hard to do.
I addressed part of my wall that needed mending.
Let me explain…
For several years I have had someone in my life who I have really admired, but I didn’t always make the wise choice to respect her. She is smart, witty, and outwardly loves God more than anyone else I had ever met in life. And at one point in my journey, she was my boss.
Now, I don’t know what happens inside of us when we lack the discipline to keep jealousy and frustration from penetrating our hearts — but I clearly lacked it. I started to feel attacked because she could see the vision of what we needed to do and I couldn’t. I felt frustrated. I lacked enthusiasm because my pride got in the way. I hid it from her, but I wasn’t afraid to share it all with my friend because my sinful human nature needed someone “on my side.” UGH – why do we DO that?!?! (See Psalm 64 reference below … and PS: that was totally gossip on my part which is completely uncool.)
What was happening, unbeknownst to me, was that I was slowly kicking rocks away from one section of the wall inside of me. My “wall” is what keeps me from doing the things that I know will not bring any good to me.
“Wall” – also known as healthy boundaries, willpower, and courage.
When your wall is strong you can fend off fits of rage and jealousy. When your wall is weakened you create a big hole, and much like a dog who knows how to masterfully sneak out of his yard, you start going to that weak spot as an outlet for your negative thoughts and feelings. It’s like you’ve taught yourself “it’s ok to be ugly when I’m over here, because that’s what this spot is for!” If you aren’t careful, you begin to congregate with other people who also use that weak spot in the wall to unload their negativity. I have had friendships like this in the past and it made me feel dirty after we were done gossipping about other people. If you’re in those kinds of relationships try addressing how it makes you feel. If that doesn’t work, it’s time to seek out other friendships.
Psalm 64 says that an evildoer is someone who plots with others to hide their snares saying “who will know? No one but us!” — uh yeah, about that. God knows. He sees it all. So you aren’t fooling anyone but yourself.
It’s never ok to hang out in your weak spot because it’s comfortable there, and never ever because “your people” are there.
I’m just going to leave that hanging for you to think about…. “your people.”
So what do we do about it?
Recently in church we’ve been learning about David and how he respected Saul EVEN WHEN Saul was trying to kill him. (1 Samuel, chapters 18-28) David had multiple opportunities to slander Saul and even to kill him, but every single time he would say, “yeah but, God anointed this dude and I respect God’s choices and God’s chosen people so I’m not going to kill him.” (obviously that’s my own interpretation – but I think the next bible translation absolutely needs the word “dude” in it)
DUDE … could I still respect someone who was trying to kill me? Um, it’s not likely.
So why couldn’t I respect someone who cares for me and who has always wanted the best for me? Seems easy enough.
I realized I was mending my wall from the top, down. I glossed over the real issue and made nicey-nice with myself by saying it wasn’t that big of a deal. In actuality I was avoiding attending to the foundation. But guess what happens if you don’t have a good foundation for your structure? Yeah, your walls come tumbling down. So, I chose this morning to start at the bottom. It was time to begin repairs on the wall correctly, starting with the foundation.
I called her and asked for forgiveness.
Even though she hasn’t been my boss for some time now, it has been eating away at me. I needed her to hear me say that I was sorry, that I was in the wrong, and that I was weak then but didn’t want to be anymore.
Was it hard?
Yes. Terrifying actually.
It’s never easy to admit you have been wrong, especially when you’ve grown so used to that weak spot that the thought of the labor required to rebuild the wall feels overwhelming.
But you know what?
It was life-giving.
It was a conversation filled with grace and forgiveness and prayer and sharing … and love.
I’m not “fixed”, but I am forgiven.
She forgave me and I prayed to the Lord my God for forgiveness as well. And now, I have the first few stones of my foundation set in place to mend my wall. Now I just need to keep it up and keep making wise choices.
What mending do you need to address?
What is stopping you?
Ecclesiastes 3:7 says there’s a time to tear, and a time to mend.
Go mend your wall.
You won’t regret it.