"The saddest thing about betrayal is that is rarely comes from your enemies."
The very word peaks your interest. Makes you get that sick feeling in your stomach or has you lean in a little closer. It’s the very thing great drama is made of. I remember loving to tune into Melrose Place on Wednesday nights for a little betrayal. Don’t judge, please.
But when you grow up and life is bigger than Friday night basketball games and who asked whom to the dance, betrayal is a big deal. It ends marriages, rips families apart, pits nation again nation. There is psychological, emotional and financial cost.
Betrayal can look and feel like this:
The friend who turns the painful testimony you shared into choice morsels of gossip.
The boss or business partner who takes credit for your hard work.
The spouse who covers up the addiction that is slowly eating away at them and your family.
The friend or family member who laughs at your trials and tells you deserve it.
The parent who abandoned you physically or emotionally.
The Bible is chock full of betrayal. It’s a running theme. Some very recognizable examples are:
Jacob betraying his father for Esau’s birthright.
Joseph’s brothers betraying him and selling him into slavery.
Job feeling betrayed by God – (important to note, God did not betray Job)
Saul betraying David and seeking to take his life.
Most recognizably, Judas selling out and selling Jesus for 30 pieces of silver.
So what do you do? I'd say it's not about “doing”, it’s about considering.
Consider these examples:
Like Joseph, you take pity and feed the ones who sought to destroy you.
Like Job, you worship God when you don't feel like it - "Though he slay me, yet I will hope in him. Job 13:15
Like David, you don't take revenge even when you could. David only cut the corner of Saul's coat to show mercy instead of ending it all.
and like Jesus, you wash feet and ask God to forgive the sins of the betrayer.
The Bible is full of direct commands. Love one another, forgive those who have hurt you, turn the other cheek.
But we are also told in 1 Samuel 12:24 But be sure to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you. In the Hebrew, consider means much of what it means today: perceive, contemplate, regard, give attention to.
99.9% of the time when I set out to "do" I get it wrong, horribly wrong and often bring more trouble to myself. But when I consider the examples God provides in His word, it works on my heart and that's what matters. It's not instant. Oh, I wish it was. It sometimes takes months and years for me to get in the right heart place with someone. But that's better than doing something that isn't really heart felt or out of selfish desires to be made right.
So let us consider what He has done for us. Romans 5:8 While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. We’ve been the betrayers as often as we have been betrayed. But we still get to call upon God and ask Him to be our father. No matter what we’ve done. Somehow this takes sting out of the tears I shed about betrayal and gives me hope that there's healing to be had.