I silently prayed for her, asking God to help her in her pain and give her a way to offload whatever she was feeling – anger, hurt, shame, or whatever it was.
I thought of how the author of the book of Hebrews tells us that we have a High Priest (Jesus) who is familiar with our weaknesses and temptations, so we can go boldly before Him and find mercy in our time of need.
I also thought about how some things are hard to let go of. Some pains are deeper than others and forgiveness doesn’t come easy. I wondered to God, what should we do when we know we are called to forgive, but it’s hard? Or when we choose to forgive and then six months later, it’s hurts again?
What do we do when change happens slowly? When we know we aren’t all we could or should be, but feel like we’re never going to overcome whatever sins, or even simply bad habits, entangle us?
As I thought about that a picture formed in my mind. Bear with me because it’s kind of funny, but I saw a large chair, representing God’s throne, and a little yellow dump truck being driven by the crying girl. The truck was driving in and out of the room.
She drove in to where the big chair was, and then she would turn and drive back out to pick up more stuff and then she’d come back with the next load.
I think that’s the key to what to do when we can’t move on. Instead of feeling guilty, or like a failure, each time that thing surfaces, yet again, we load up the truck with our anger or sadness and go dump it at His feet.
Sometimes offenses, or our own sins, have huge ramifications. Sometimes it’s an ongoing situation in a relationship that just won’t stop. Sometimes a lot of garbage gets dumped on us, or we pick up a lot of baggage.
The truth is that we are forgiven the moment the we ask. We are called to forgive those that offend us right away, as well – to not carry a grudge.
Sometimes even having done that – having said you won’t hold it against them or demand justice or keep bringing it up – it still hurts. As I’ve heard it said, if your friend runs over your foot and breaks it, you can choose to forgive, but your foot still hurts. It still has to heal.
Our souls might be that way, too. There can be layers to uncover, and ways we’ve been impacted that are revealed little by little.
Rather than wallow in it, or berate ourselves for not being able to move on, I think it’s better to load that junk on the proverbial dump truck and leave it at the feet of our merciful God. If we keep on, eventually the pile will be whittled down to nothing.
Maybe what matters most is that we have a desire to change and we keep loading up the truck.
What do you think?
*image from clipartbest.com