Updated: Jan 31
Dear hurting woman,
Today I walked through one of the happiest department stores - Target - but I didn't shop as long as I wanted to. I'm sure you will understand why. This time of year the aisles are stocked with every variety of chocolate candy, red and pink balloons in the shape of hearts, and satin nightgowns. There are cards on display with sentiments that use words like "always" and phrases like "be mine forever".
Needless to say, today I didn't linger and I left the store empty handed and heavyhearted. I know you can relate and I am sorry that you can. I am sorry you know the pain that accompanies a person when they have been betrayed. Suddenly the red and pink colors are grey, the chocolate isn't sweet and the satin nightgowns just make you feel cold. Being by yourself is maddening and crowds make you feel even more alone than you already are. You avoid the mirror. You feel that eerie twinge of fear when you enter a dark, empty house alone. You spend hours heaving over the toilet. You open your Bible and question the God who wrote it and you find yourself asking, If I can't do enough or be enough, will Jesus betray me too? You know the ache in the morning and the nightmares at night. It's a deep ache and an even deeper awareness of every tiny imperfection. Hearing sermons on family and marriage feel like a blazing neon light reminding you of your pain and those love songs on the radio are shut off the second the first note begins. It's hard. No, it's more than hard. It's brutal. And then Valentine's Day dawns with Marvin Gaye serenading us everywhere we turn. If you feel anything at all, it's usually cynicism. But most of the time you just feel numb. During this time of year, you need heart-helping instead of heart-wrenching reminders so here is some encouraging truths - from my bruised and bandaged heart to your broken one.
You were betrayed by a fallen sinner, not by the Savior.
You see, the Savior saves, not destroys. The shattering of your heart and the betrayal of others is not a reflection of the God who heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds and who's faithfulness is everlasting. Do not allow one person's unfaithfulness create doubt in the only One who was and is faithful
You were rejected by a human being, not by the Sacrificial Lamb.
People reject people because sin is all about rejection. Sin rejects holiness, rejects authority and rejects all that is true and pure. But, friend, your bitter earthly rejection has no bearing on the God who endured the cross for you. He loved you on Calvary and He loves you today. Do not allow your mind to believe that something will change the mind of the God who calls you His own.
You were ignored by a person, not by the Maker.
You were created in the image of the God who left Heaven to ransom your soul. That kind of love isn't going to forget or ignore. You may have been made to feel like you don't matter by a person here on earth, but your Maker collects every tear you shed, is acquainted with your every thought and every pang of grief, and numbers every strand of hair on your head. Do not question if He hears, if He sees, or if He cares. He does, sister, He does.
You were mistreated by a mortal man, not by God Almighty.
Sin is ugly and what it does to people is even uglier. But God is tender and strong. He is passionate and merciful. His throne is high and His goodness is boundless. In this life, we will endure betrayal and deep hurt at the hands of people but do not pull our kind and immortal God down to the level of sinful, mortal men.
I know you are hurting and wondering and questioning and fearing. I know you wrestle with emotions that you can't even articulate - but take heart. As you walk into department stores and see glimmers of romance all around you, focus on the day when the grandest Valentine's Day sentiments will be but child's play. Let Jesus come close because His love is sweeter than every box of chocolate. His faithfulness surpasses all that can be promised in a cheesy love song. His thoughts for you could cover the expanse of the sky a billion times over. His tender lovingkindness is more beautiful than any bouquet of flowers. His eyes are upon you. And you, sweet woman, will never be betrayed by One like that.