Its easy to love a friend, a family member when they love you back. When they want you. When they want to hang out, when they want to share life with you. To walk arm in arm with you through whatever life throws at you. Who is there when life is rough and when life is great.
But what about that family member or friend that doesn’t want you? That doesn’t love you? What about them?
Last night my mom called her sister after finding out she was supposed to have surgery on her heart. She wanted to fly out there to be with her sister and take care of her. Her sister responded with no, I don’t have room. Then informed mom that one of her other sisters were coming and she only had room for her. My mom got off the phone and began to cry… her big sister didn’t want her. Again. All those moments where they chose to do things with out her… the sister shoes and sister trips all came rushing back.
Not being wanted is one of the worst feelings in the world. Especially when that someone is supposed to love you, to want you. So what do you do? Cut them out of your lives? Keep reaching out- even when your hands are slapped away?
Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. Matthew 18:21
I know it hurts, that it is easier to give up and walk away. Trust me I know. I have wanted to do it a thousand times… every time I see the pain they cause on my families faces.
If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Romans 12:18
But is that what he would do? Give up? Walk away? Look at them and say ‘Well you’ve rejected me. Nailed me to a cross even, spit on me and hated me so… you know what? I’m done.’ Remember the part in the bible where He is on the cross? What did He say? Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 22:34
Yes sometimes we have to walk away for our own safety, but forgive them. Holding on to it will only hurt you not them. I’ve struggled with that for a long time… we’ve never been particularly close to my extended family in distance or relationship wise. We get an occasional call… mostly when they need something, a Christmas cards at the holidays and that’s about it. Not because we wanted it that way, but because they never let us.
One cousin in particular takes great pleasure the few times we see her to brag about her farm etc., etc… She knows that’s what I have always wanted, to have enough property to raise cows and get horses and she likes rubbing in our faces the fact that she has what we have always wanted. For a long time I couldn’t stand her. Even hearing her name made me angry. But I finally realized that the only thing that was doing was making me miserable. Not her. She could care less. I still struggle with it sometimes. But I’m learning to forgive her, one day, one step, one word at a time.