Several years ago, a leader whom I highly respected made a decision that smacked of disloyalty and betrayal toward me. The decision benefited her, but was extremely costly to me. It was difficult for me to think that she would betray me like this, so I attempted numerous times to contact her to talk things out. She ignored my overtures, and the more she shut me out, the more frustrated I became. One day, we happened to run into each other and I took the opportunity to bring up the subject. She became angry and defensive, which confirmed to me she knew what she had done was wrong.
By the time that short conversation ended, she lost her cool. But, I lost my edge. I didn’t just lose my edge. I lost respect for her. From that point on, neither of us spoke of the situation again. In fact, I went out of my way to avoid her. As time went on, I found myself becoming extremely cautious. “Another lesson in life,” I told myself. “Now I’m much wiser than I was before.” The truth is, I wasn’t sharper. My senses had dulled and my attitude became cynical.
A few years later, I was invited to serve on a committee. After accepting the invitation, I was informed that my offender would be serving with the same group, and my role would actually put me in a position to work under her. I seriously struggled with this and considered reneging on my decision to accept.
God dealt with me about my attitude and, after much inner conflict, I finally asked Him to give me grace to handle the situation. He seemed to say, “What she did was wrong. But, I am more concerned about your attitude than I am about what she did. You have two choices: Refuse the invitation and retreat into your protective cover. Or go back to where you lost your edge and retrieve it. How you walk into that committee meeting will make or break you. Throw in a stick so you can regain your edge.”
I remember standing in the hallway outside the room where the committee was to meet. I breathed a quick prayer for grace and entered the room. There sat my offender, avoiding eye contact with me. God nudged me forward and I “threw in a stick” by sticking out my hand to shake hers. As we shook hands, our eyes met and her silent response to my overture spoke volumes. We successfully served together on that committee for two years. I regained my edge. Progress continued.
- How will your relationship with the Lord be different after this week’s quest?