I heard a friend say, “I loved him and thought I was loved back until I paused long enough to see his behavior and words told me otherwise.”
I know the feeling, the heartbreak, the slammed-door-in-the-face-reality-check. It’s rough to experience, but to close my eyes and ears to reality would have ultimately been worse. Not that I had a choice in my specific situation, but I at least had a choice in how authentic I was as I healed.
There are many ways to apply the lesson. With a slightly different filter, we need to be honest about our friendships, work situations, entertainment choices, church involvement, and more. We need to be honest about what is happening around us, the potential impact on us, and how we are engaging and responding. In some cases, we can be caught off guard because of someone else’s decisions and deceptions. In most cases, if we’re willing, we can see some truths we might not want to face or caution lights that should pause us. Our response might not change the outcome, but sometimes it does. And perhaps it’s not as much about the outcome as the responsibility with which we handle the process.
We don’t have to be suspicious; we can be attentive. We don’t have to be guarded; we can be authentic. We don’t have to be controlling; we can be responsible. It’s worth the humility.