Harboring Hurt and Disappointment
Do you ever get angry with yourself for caring?
I know I have felt this way quite a bit. Especially if you really like someone and the feelings are not reciprocated. You might say to yourself, "See, this is why I do not like to take chances with my heart- because I always end up disappointed." Honestly speaking, I think a lot of us are looking to be disappointed. Some of you may be saying to yourself right now, "No, that is not me," but I have to say that we have probably all been in this place, although we may not have recognized it at the time If you have ever taken a chance on someone, and knew that there was a possibility that they would "mess up" and they did, and then you said to yourself, "I knew this would happen" (in some shape or form), then you have been there.
You may even get upset or angry with yourself, not understanding why you are so disappointed and annoyed with that person, those people, or that situation. You might get a little heated, and it takes everything in you to stay calm, but you are really fighting the fury stirring within.
It may be something that has happened before and it bothered you, but this one time you just could not take it anymore.
You may not even want to acknowledge your anger because you do not want to give the situation any power.
I have been in a place where I did not even realize the level of frustration or disappointment and it paralyzed me, leaving me unresponsive because it took over my mind and body like a drug. It truly silenced my voice within and I would shut down. I have even done this in the midst of people I love, and they did not do anything to me but something as simple as their presence triggered a negative response. When this happens, we like to blame them for our hurt and pain, but what we really need to do is take a look within.
People can upset us and even do something deliberately and intentionally to hurt us, but I am not talking about those people; I am talking about the people or circumstances where the result of you caring and opening your heart has left you feeling like you made a mistake in doing so. You do not know what to say to the person, how to be around them or even how to communicate effectively. I have found that when it gets this bad, I am harboring some feelings towards them that are reflecting my past, and their existence in my life has pulled the fire alarm on an area that has been festering with the bacteria of years and years of hurt, depravity, disappointment, and pain.
Being vulnerable sometimes reminds me of my discomforts. When I feel that I can not control the level of intimacy that I want to share in a friendship or any type of relationship, it makes me uncomfortable. When people do not respond the way I want, assume, or think that they should respond it feels as if I have no grasp on my life.
At one time, being affectionate and going out of my way to give someone I know, loved, and cared for a hug was difficult for me. Now, at times it still is, but God is working. I am learning that genuine intimacy and affection means that you have to step outside of yourself and we do not always want to do that. We do not want to inconvenience ourselves in any way for others.
Most of the time, when we are disappointed it is because it is something personal, important, and valuable to us that another may take for granted. We give to them, hoping to get the same in return and when someone does not respond to us in the same manner, our actions, attitude, and behavior all show the heart of our giving.
Did we give because we were looking to receive something? Did we give because we want someone to do the same for us? If so, this means our focus is on us rather than giving and sharing the way Christ has called us to do. He gives to us so that we can be a blessing to others and I am not just talking about with material things.
If we grow up in a family or environment where someone said "I love you" through things rather than a relationship or intimacy, we may be looking for the same in return. We do this with God as well and it can become a counterfeit way of saying I love you. We get disappointed because we did the right thing and now we want a return on our investment. Who are we but servants to want to be rewarded for what God told us to do and has done for us. If we know we are to apologize because God told us to do so, then do it without expecting an apology in return.
I am not saying this is easy, but often He tells us to do things and we refuse to do what He asks. Rather, we only do the things we feel like doing that are important to us. How selfish is that? Then, we wonder why we are disappointed. God help us.
Harboring disappointment and hurt can harden our hearts and keep us away from God and the ones who truly love us. We can be deceived by our own hearts and it can lead us to a life of lies and deception. We must be careful.
"Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses? And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient? So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief,"(Hebrews 3:12-19 English Standard Version).