By: Pastor Jarren Rogers
Who is responsible for your wellbeing?
I’ve heard it described like this:
Say you are crossing the street and, halfway to the other side, a car runs the stop sign and hits you. You wake up in the hospital with two broken legs. After running you over, the car drove off, and the driver is never found.
Now, who is responsible for your injury? Of course, the driver of the car is responsible for injuring you. But who is responsible for your injury? Who is responsible for the recovery? Who is responsible for going through the process necessary to make sure you walk again?
Although the pain was inflicted upon you, it’s your responsibility to recover from it. No one can go to physical therapy for you. No one can undergo the surgery required. No one can learn to walk again in your place.
You must take responsibility for your wellbeing.
The same is true with any emotional or relational difficulty we experience. We’ve been betrayed and hurt by ones that we love. All of us know what it’s like to be in a hit-and-run emotionally–someone does or says something painful that gets you off guard.
Those instances are challenging. The temptation, in those moments, is to place all of the responsibility at the feet of the one who hurt us. We blame and we hate. Bitterness burrows itself deep in our hearts. We feel like they have taken something from us that we’ll never get back.
But here’s the fact of the matter:
Blame and bitterness will never repair your broken legs. Fostering hate for the person that hurt you doesn’t help you learn to walk again.
This is why Christ calls us to forgive even our greatest enemies. Unforgiveness does nothing for you but magnifies your hurt. Placing responsibility on the driver of the car can prevent you from ever taking the necessary steps to recover.
First, we must forgive and then we can heal. Only after we’ve recovered the responsibility for our emotional well-being from the one who hurt us can we work towards mending our broken heart. Only then can we take our hurts to the cross. We can gather them up and hand them to Jesus, who understands betrayal and suffering. In return, he can give us hope and encouragement. He can whisper words of life into are darkest of seasons.
But we must forgive. We must let go. We must take responsibility for our hurts so that we can turn to Christ for healing. When our legs are broken, Christ provides us with the strength to stand, the example to follow, and he cheers us on as we begin to walk again.