“I cant get rid of it,” she said with tears streaming down her face.Her words gripped me like corset or an undergarment…
“I cant get rid of it,” she kept saying.
Offense feels like that. A resentment or annoyance of a perceived insult to or disregard for oneself, or one’s standards or principles, can stick to you like a wetsuit.
If we’re not walking in the truth of knowing who your Defender is, we can take in offense like a seam. We absorb it as if it’s our own stitching.We make it personal, internalize it and even monogram it. It becomes a part of us so to speak. Worn like a corset, it holds us in and squeezes the life out of us.The undergarment of offense can get pretty gnarly looking.
When a resentment takes root it’s hard to “undress” it .Unless, you’re willing to strip down, bear it all, and be “get rid of it.”
I know how hard it is to undress it because I wore resentment like a burlap bag.
It wasn’t pretty.
I was fully clothed in the bitter wardrobe of resentment. Literally, for years !
Oh my gosh, like my mother was. As I’m sitting here, writing this, I distinctly remember a conversion I had with my mother in her last days. I had just read a devotional to her and something in it triggered her. With tears in her eyes and an IV in her arm,she grasped her heart and pounded on it with her fragile hand. She said with a rather pained tone of voice, ‘I can’t get rid of it!” Not exactly sure as to what “it” was she was referring to, I leaned in closer, and gently asked what “it” was. Pressing in and listening intently to her shaky voice, she said, quivering,” the resentment, the bitterness”,still tapping on her chest all the while with her weathered fingers. The resentment had become such an integrate part of her. It had threaded itself around her heart so tightly that it appeared tailor made. Only the best Designer could possibly untangle it. I didn’t fully understand where it all came from at the time but I do now.
I was facing a similar battle although I was totally unaware of it at that time. I just sat there, numb and blindly glaring at her. I didn’t know what to do or say next…
As I sat there, my heart heavily burdened,she continued on about ALL the offenses that had taken place over a span of the last 60 years. My heart began to race. I tried to hold back the tears but they weld up anyway. I felt her anguish .I felt like I had relived it with her in that moment. That could be because I am an empath and extremely sensitive to others pain ,sometimes to a fault, but the fact of the matter is this. I deeply felt her pain and began to understood, maybe for the first time, that I couldn’t take it away. I tried anyway. Just one last time .In attempting to make her feel better, I tried in every which way I knew how ,to reason with her, explain to her, pray with her,seek forgiveness with her and for of those who had offended her but, it seemingly, fell on death ears.
Not only hers, but mine as well.
As I reflect back, I was constantly feeling offended . By this comment, that look, covert criticism, subtle sarcasm, or just fill in the blank….I felt it and carried it like a cloak tightly wrapped around me.
Needless to say, it ate at the very fabric of my being until I began to unravel its grasp on me.
It took the unraveling of my own resentment in order to experience the freedom that I now have. So unravel I did. With the help of course, of my trusted counselor and friend. To fully heal and finally ,to extend forgiveness and grace to those who had offended my heart. I knew deep down inside, that I had to “get rid of it!”
I didn’t want to wear it like my mother had…
I just couldn’t pray and wish it away anymore. It was like a moth eating away at the very fabric of me. I had to ,first, acknowledge that I was getting chewed up by it. Secondly, I had to choose to let go of its grasp on me and do the necessary work to “get rid of it!”
Those” daggum”people…Those people! You know those people.Those people that I resented were just the mannequins dressed in disguise. Those people that I had no grace for.Those people whom I cut out of my life. Those people were … Well, those very people were the ones whose seemed to have the keen ability to bring out the “ugly” in me, the dross that’s lurking within. Those people, God bless ’em, are often the ones that ultimately lead us to the very freedom we seek, to the help we need, to the truth and counsel our hearts have been longing for. Those people are usually the ones that God chooses to use in order that we be purified, refined and clothed in His righteousness in exchange for our resentment. It’s Those people. Thats more than fair exchange don’t ya think. However, the exchange isn’t free. It will cost you. Exchanging our wardrobe of resentments for His cloak of righteousness is like sewing a garment without a pattern to follow. It requires our leaning into Him, blindly at times,but lean we must. Surrendering our offenses, and knowing full well, that He is our tailor made Defender,we begin to loosen resentments loop holes.
I learned a lot about my mother during the uncovering of her deeply woven offenses. I learned to ask the hard questions and listen to the difficult answers.
Leaving me wrecked inside,I knew I had to process and let go of my own offenses!
It was time to “GET RID IF IT !”
I didn’t want “it” to squeeze the life out of me like it did my mother. Her tears led to eventually healing as did mine. That clothing just did NOT suit me any longer!
Good news is that through it all, in the end, Mother was able to let go of a lot of her offenses and is now peacefully resting in the arms of her heavenly Daddy!❤️
Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.