The heart, the mind, the spirit often are at war with each other, pulling us like the rope of a tug of war. One area where this being pulled and stretched this way that way every way is in the realm of friendships and relationships. For over a year I have had this ordeal with a particular service provider… I have known her for many years but I have to admit I stayed away from her at one point and then we both moved and changed phone numbers. Last year, our paths crossed again and it was nostalgia of the good overlooking the bad.
She offered to render her business service for me for free as I was a servant of God and living by faith. I told her that I would pay as that is her living but she insisted it would be a blessing for her to bless me. In the end for well over a year, she hoarded onto my stuff and kept telling me she would do the needful ‘next week’ or next month. It was really frustrating as I had paid for the things that she had kept and I wasn’t able to speak logically with her that she is tying down the ministry resources. To cut a long story short, after many accusations and dragging things and making me sit there for hours while she dilly dallies and did things wrongly, and despite asking her several times to return my stuff so that I can find alternative service providers, she refused.
I know she is deep down lonely… and she enjoys my company. In fact for her birthday last year I was the only one who visited her, and I did take a gift.. I do live by faith but I have always been a giver – my mother’s upbringing I must admit. I have a tendency to give for no reason, as my love language I guess.. And I realised that she was using my needs for her service as an emotional blackmail for me to spend time with her. I put up with her verbal abuse big time and tried to be patient seeing her need for love. In fact, I kept putting my schedules and commitments aside to try to spend much quality time with her.
It became increasingly harder after I shifted to this apartment as now not only my housework had increased but my ministry demands had also more than doubled. I couldn’t handle it anymore and wanted to get my stuff from her… The last few times I went to do that, my heart couldn’t bear hurting her…
Following the incidents of this last week and noticing how much of peace I had been losing over this (and my friends observing it and telling me that straight to my face) made me realise that I had to cut the strings of friendship. You cannot speak logic to people who insist they do no wrong and it’s always the fault of the other person. Today I took a friend of mine along with me so that she can’t dilly dally with this need for which the deadline was towering in.
As we walked down that lane, I prayed asking God for His wisdom, His grace, not to say unnecessary things and to not lose my witness but at the same time I surrendered this friendship as something I had to let go as I had to safeguard the time that He had given me and use it wisely to do the things He has called me to do. For a believer being a horse with blinders set on the narrow track racecourse isn’t an option.
What a miracle unfolded after I finally obeyed God to do what I had to do.. She just asked me if I wanted the rest of my things too.. I said yes please.. and what I couldn’t achieve this last one year as I was trying to protect the friendship happened in a moment in a pleasant manner after a simple yielding of my heart to the Spirit.
Be harmless as a dove but as wise as a serpent!
When we yield to the leading of His Spirit, His peace transcends all understanding..
Feeling rattled or edgy in a situation shows that something isn’t right and needs to be set right –
whether our focus needs to go on Jesus above the storm
or whether we are to step out of the storm!