Monday, January 29, 2007

the rest of the story

Today is a bit of a continuation of yesterday. While I was eating my veg burger for lunch yesterday, I remembered the end of Sunday's sermon on the goodness of God. One thing I've learned from being in a 12 step program is that lack of trust is a killer. That's my particular form of substance abuse. We can only find God by believing, and further, by believing He won't harm us, and in fact means good for us. Just think about all of the things you couldn't do if you didn't trust in the basic goodness of people, usually total strangers. You couldn't ride any public transportation if you did not trust that the driver would take you where you wanted to go. You couldn't eat if you felt restaurant help might poison you. You could not call anyone to ask for help of any kind if you didn't trust that the person you asked would, in fact, help you.

I had a horrible come-uppance in this regard this week. I did not trust in a friend I deeply care about. Something they did, not intended at all for harm but to help me, was misread. I cannot take my words back. Worse yet, I can't take back the fact that I did not trust them. To me that fact ruins months of trust-building that I may not be able to repair. If I can it is due to the goodnes of the other person, not me. I long for their forgiveness, but I'm not sure the friendship will ever be the same, and my heart is broken to pieces over my own foolishness.

The end of Sunday's sermon was about the apostle Thomas. When Jesus reappeared to the disciples after He rose, Thomas wasn't among them. The other men told him Jesus was alive, and Jesus Himself told them all numerous times He'd fall into the hands of evil men, be killed and rise again. But Thomas said that unless he could put his fingers into the nail holes and his hand into Jesus' side, he would not believe Jesus was alive. It was the old "Izzy Furreal" situation. This is the Lord of all the universe, Someone who had walked with these men for three years, done miracles among them, trained them, ate with them, protected them, did everything He said He would. Still, Thomas refused to accept the word of his friends and the testimony of his greatest Friend, who would never lie unless he had proof. The amazing thing is, Jesus was not offended by this request at all. He reappeared to the disciples while Thomas, this time, was in the room. Jesus said basically, here's the holes in My hands and My side-come put your fingers and your hand in them-don't be disbelieving anymore, but believe. He also said, "Blessed are the ones who don't see and yet believe". To be blessed means to be happy and joyful regardless of outward circumstances (in other words, what you see...) I need to take a lesson....over and over.


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