But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” -Genesis 3:9 (NIV)
And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen” -II Timothy 4:18 (NKJV)
We all bring emotional scars and baggage into our relationships, and end up hurting one another, often without realizing it.
What God does, though, is expose that…cast a burning spotlight on the sin, so that we may face it.
And He will ask you, as He asked Adam: “Where are you?”
It’s not that God doesn’t know where you are. He wants you to speak (confess) and own up to where you are in your walk, and turn (repent) when you’ve strayed from His intended path for you. As always, God will forgive you, and He makes your way straight again.
But what if you, or the other person, won’t (or can’t, due to lack of awareness) stop hurting others? What can God do for you then?
Nowhere in the bible is abuse condoned or approved. It can be as obvious and concrete as physical abuse, or emotional and mental abuse, which leave no physical marks or evidence.
God doesn’t just deliver His children from this world, but also from every evil work done to His children in this world, to preserve us for His kingdom. So while we may still suffer and endure for a period, God also calls us to see and discern between godly and ungodly suffering, and to stay or move/act in faith when His Spirit speaks to us.
An enlightening and eye-opening article by Dr. Tim Clinton, president of the American Association of Christian Counselors, talks about ways to know if what you have is true, Godly love, or something shallower and of the flesh:
- True Love Seeks to Love as Jesus Loves
- True Love Is Wise and Strong
- True Love Stands against Evil
- True Love Is Rooted in God’s Love
- True Love Will Not Fail
Read more about each of these points in his article, “How To Know If What You Have Is True Love.”
God can work healing wonders in us and our relationships, and part of how He works is through us. So we are not to simply sit back and suffer–or inflict suffering–and expect things to get better. No.
God has cast His convicting light on our sin. We honor Him in following His model of love for us, thus glorifying Him every healing step along the way.