My Footsteps Slip Not

My Footsteps Slip Not

Most of us have lost a loved one at some point in our lives. They’ve crossed over into the spirit realm to the Great Beyond and evade our grasp. We long to see them, that’s for sure, and our hearts feel they will never heal. There’s another loss that is almost as devastating: the loss of relationship.

Sometimes we’re uncertain what it is we’ve done to cause a friend or relative to become cold, silent, or even full of disgust toward us.

I’ve experienced several such losses which have left a deep hurt, first from my mother, and then my son Joshua, who died by suicide at age 25. Both of these special loved ones had issues that I continue to have a hard time understanding.

I have decided some people don’t bounce. Their life was too overwhelming, too complicated, and too cruel, for their sensitive hearts. In the past, I blamed myself for failing them. Did I really, though? Neither my mom nor my son started out life broken, but by the end of their days their souls lay shattered.

Where does this leave those of us struggling to understand our loved ones? What does God expect from us as we strive to be patient within such relationships?

More recently, a dear friend has come to consider me a threat. I’ve agonized and prayed for God to show me where my responsibilities lie to get us over this relationship hump. Through the long months, I’ve gone through a myriad of emotions, including: hurt, anger, and fear. What happened to us, two friends who once shared so much joy and heartache?

I prayed we could talk it out, but realized over time she needed to initiate the discussion. So I asked God, “Please bring us together and help her bring up the topic of our problems.”

The time came when my friend and I were alone, and she brought up her grievances. I apologized to her for the things I knew had hurt her deeply. Other issues she had against me were unfounded and I told her so, all said with respect and in a soft voice. Then, I looked her in the eyes and said, “I don’t understand why you have this opinion of me, but know that I will always love you. And I’ll consider your feelings from now on and not blurt out like I tend to do.”

Like I said, some people don’t bounce and we must treat them with extra respect. I can’t tease and joke around with my friend like I do some people. She doesn’t trust me enough to handle it.

After we parted, I was relieved God had answered my prayer and given me a chance to say I was sorry. And my friend even initiated it like I thought she should. My faith in Jesus grew because God heard my prayers. Now whether or not my friend has forgiven me is between her and the Lord. Do I trust her? No. I don’t. From now on I will be on guard with her, but this will teach me to listen more and talk less with sensitive folks.

To guide me in troublesome relationships, I meditate on Psalm 17:5. “Hold up my goings in thy paths, that my footsteps slip not.” KJV

If I consult God when I’m left wondering what happened between me and someone else, bitterness will not take root within my heart. I will learn to see both sides of the story.

 

Father God, thank You for showing me how to be a better friend. Thank You for healing my broken heart and showing me where I’m at fault within relationships. In Jesus’s name I pray. Amen

 

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Jean Ann Williams About Jean Ann Williams

Jean Ann Williams lives in Southern Oregon with her husband Jim. Although one of their children has passed on to the Great Beyond, their two remaining children have blessed them with thirteen grandchildren, their Baker’s Dozen. Jean Ann keeps up two blogs: the first is about the writing life Jean Ann Williams: Author, and Love Truth where she writes of how God continues to encourage and bless her after her son’s suicide in 2004.

Comments

  1. Thank you, Cherie, for having me on your team. I’m truly blessed!

    [Reply]

    Cherie Burbach

    Cherie Burbach Reply:

    We are blessed by you, Jean. The story of your son reaches deep into the pockets of our souls.

    [Reply]

  2. Thank you, Cherie, I do hope and pray my losses will bless others in some way. And you do a great job on the photos with our articles. Blessed day to you, new friend!

    [Reply]

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