A couple weeks ago I discovered that I hated someone. It was a horrifying discovery. I mean I know that hating is the same thing as murder. I know as a Christian you just don’t hate people. I mean you don’t even go there. Along with that discovery, I also discovered that I have hated quite a few people over my short lifetime. I just always called it something else. Something that sounded better. I just ‘didn’t like them very much’. They made me feel ‘righteous anger’. Etc. Etc. It’s interesting how we trick ourselves into thinking that something we feel isn’t really what we feel because that would just be bad. I’ve done that with a lot of things. I just didn’t know that hatred was one of them.
When God brought that to my attention there was a sense of relief. I know, I know relief at discovering your hatred for someone?? How is that even possible?? The relief did not come at the knowledge of my sin but at finally figuring out the feeling I was experiencing. I finally understood my deep repulsion of the person in a way I hadn’t before. I figured out why I couldn’t move past this— I was hurt. I felt betrayed. I was angry. Out of all that I chose to hate the person who caused it and I desperately wanted them to pay for what they had done.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking over the last couple weeks. You see I know I can’t change that feeling in my heart. I could deny it and pretend it isn’t there but that doesn’t change the fact that it is. It would perhaps make me feel better about myself if I did that but that still doesn’t fix the root cause of it. With hatred. . . I can’t fix it. Jesus is the only one who can do that. Because I am desperately wicked in my own strength. That being said, we don’t just roll over and play dead. There ARE steps we can and must take. I’ve been praying a lot asking for help in knowing how to move forward. What is the first step in the process??
I don’t know if there is a first step. Most people say the first step is admitting that you have a problem. Well yes. I do have problem. I hate someone. Why do I hate them? Because they hurt me, they betrayed me, and they don’t even seem to care.
When I look at that I see something. Well two things. In choosing to hate the person, I am refusing to forgive them. In refusing to forgive them, I am refusing to give control of the situation to God. I still want control. Control is always a big deal for me. Because to let go of control means I have let go of what I think is best and to trust God completely. It may sound really immature but it’s very real to me and I can’t hide from it anymore.
I have not chosen the path of my Savior, he promises a very light burden. I have a really really heavy burden right now, this hatred. So my options are pretty much, continue to live in hatred, or surrender the situation to God and forgive the person. In choosing the second one, I am not choosing to live in denial of my pain or saying that my pain doesn’t matter. My pain is very real and it DOES matter to God. I am simply choosing what I do after the fact. I can move on or I can stay under the bondage of hatred. I can continue to say my PAIN is more important than God or I can say that God is more important than my pain.
With our white flag sailing in the night
Eyes pointed to the sky
Hands up and open wide, open wide
-For King & Country