we were accused of things that were not true. our character was questioned. our calling was questioned. even our abilities and motives were called into question. it was all based on a wrong perception of a small issue…and that perception was given space and fuel to grow by people in positions of influence over others.
the attack on our reputation and character could not be stopped. no matter how we tried to defend ourselves, the damage continued to escalate. and so did our pain.
eventually (like most everything in life), it passed. we held on to each other. we leaned on people who knew the truth about us and spoke truth into our lives. the power and presence of a loving and benevolent god always loomed faithfully over us. that chapter of our life came to and end. we moved on…with lessons learned.
we decided to take the high road.
the natural side of us wanted to retaliate. we wanted to call them out. we wanted those people to be seen for who they were and what they did to us. we wanted revenge. we wanted them to know and feel our pain…and have more than a little of their own, for what they had done to us.
but we chose another road. we chose silence. we chose to let god be god. we chose to believe that the wrong would be righted…if god wanted that to happen. we chose to believe that anything we did to balance the scales might end up making everything worse.
we chose to pray for the strength and openness to forgive. eventually (though not immediately), that happened. we chose to ask god to give us wisdom on how to proceed…and for him to teach us lessons that would sustain our lives through future pain that would inevitably come in the years ahead.
we chose the high road.
we’re not heroes. faaaaaar from it! things still hurt. emotions still get raw. we are often left to struggle in the silence of personal dark places. we find ourselves wrestling with the mechanics of forgiving. sometimes it feels like nothing more than gutting it out, until the pain subsides…but we’ll take this road over the other option every time!
sometimes hurt comes because people are ignorant or clueless. sometimes hurt comes because people are powerless to keep it from happening…or they just don’t know what to do to avoid it. sometimes people are insensitive or careless. sometimes people are mean and vindictive.
i’ve said it before. i’ll hold on to this truth as tightly and carefully as i do any others in my life: hurt people hurt people.
the high road is not about assuming a morally or spiritually superior position. it’s about climbing up to a spot that allows us to see the biggest picture possible…and stay close enough to the one who’s been there before us.