I've found a new layer of grief. But, in His goodness, God is still teaching me things along the way. Like last week, as I was shuffling through all of the recent things, God showed me something I hadn't quite realized out-loud about myself: I am a deep feeler. In fact, I will feel my feelings and yours if you need me to. I am sure God made me this way to allow me to be compassionate with others in a way I couldn't if I didn't imagine their feelings but sometimes it feels like a heavy load. This trait of mine became apparent to me as I realized how hurt I was for a friend who, once again, was hurt by someone that just doesn't get it. Not only did they not get it, but threw years of friendship and honesty out the door when my friend shared her heart. I hurt for her. And once you see something in one place, you start to notice it more everywhere. Like being on a diet and seeing food commercials all the time.
I'm not one to blame the enemy for everything wrong thing in the world. I think that people often use him as a scapegoat for their own bad behaviors, so I can't say for certain what his part in all of this is. I am thinking that humans are doing just fine being hateful and unloving to one another on their own.
This recent bout of "fight through" started with a chance meeting with two people. One of which has spoken nothing but venom about me for the last several months and the other sat at my Christmas dinner table. One spoke to me and pretended all was well and the other completely ignored me. At the time it was more annoying than hurtful but it cracked open a door to a new stage of all of this mess to deal with. I'm still not sure which is more painful.
And now I am knee deep in a "why don't you defend us" phase. It's hard to sit and watch the good character of Godly people be spit on while people who know better look on. It's hard to sit back and know that terrible things are being said about you and others while people who know better do nothing. It's hard to watch a friend have his life stripped from him, his dreams tossed aside and job vaporized while people rationalize and justify it. It's hard to watch people basically cover their ears and eyes and just go along. It's hard to watch a friend be ignored by someone whose husband witnesses it and does nothing. It's hard to reach out to people in love and get a canned, rehearsed answer. I just don't get it.
It makes me angry and sad and hurt all at the same time. And not just for myself but for countless amounts of friends. In in true "feeling other people's feelings" fashion, I feel very deeply for those still "in it". My heart truly breaks for those still causing others pain. The fact that they can't see what they are doing and continue to hurt others worries me for when they wake up. They are digging deep holes. I've seen it happen time and again. People are "in it", they wake up and get out and then are overwhelmed by the reality of their bad behaviors and have to start digging out in a way that is painful and hard. It's all but a guaranteed process.
But like in a dream, I cannot wake them up. I long to, I desire to, I want nothing more than to invite them over for dinner and share in a real way. I'm holding a place for them and setting the table.
At the same time, I can just see the dawn coming. Secrets are being exposed. I feel God lifting His command of silence. I'm not quite sure what it means but it's encouraging. He is coming. He sees.
In the meantime I am comforted by James 5:4:
All the workers you have exploited and cheated cry out for judgement. The groans of the workers you used and abused are a roar in the ears of the Master Avenger.
He is coming.