Loving Those Who Have Hurt Us

Written By Renée Miller

It's always a challenge to love people who have been hurtful towards us in some way.  It may be that we have been ignored, or betrayed, or exploited, or someone has just been thoughtless towards us. One of the most common ways we respond to the hurt that we feel is to retreat.  We want to move into a space where we are safe and our wounds can be healed.  Common sense tells us that we need to put a wall around ourselves for protection from any subsequent action on the part of the one who has hurt us. Sometimes, when we have been physically or emotionally abused, we absolutely must put ourselves in a place where we are safe from harm.  But whether or not we have any further contact with the person who has caused us pain, we still have to deal with our soul.

Memories are like cracked fissures in hot, dry earth.  They run deep and are unpredictable, even untidy.  They emerge at odd times, often when we least expect them.  Phrases, looks, feelings, can skirt across our consciousness when we are completely unprepared.  All of a sudden we find ourselves spiraling down almost against our will.  We may feel frightened or anxious—angry or tearful.  The person who caused us the pain does not even need to be anywhere in our physical orbit for these emotions to be let loose in us.  This is the time for paying attention to our soul.

Yes, it's a challenge to love those who have hurt us.  But love is like a balm that brings peace to our soul.  When the memories flit across the stage of our life and we find ourselves entangled in the feelings that follow, we might simply try to allow God's love to waft over us and over the one who has been the cause of our pain. In the heat of that divine love, we just may find our soul becoming still.