Is It Better To Protect Yourself From Others Because They Can Hurt You Or Believe The Best And Get Hurt?
People truly swing on both sides of the spectrum. Both may have their benefits, and both have detriments. But which one does God want us to engage in? What is the most pleasing to Him?
When we see the best, or the potential in others, it makes us rally to encourage them. We see them with “love glasses” wherein we often overlook their faults, or we fail to see the obvious red flags in their personality.
We are so focused on their good traits, that we often overlook things we should have paid attention to (warning signs). It causes a detriment to us, personally, because we can become discouraged when they hurt us, or, with some, take advantage of us. Their actions can end up causing us to internalize what they have done, we end up cleaning up their mess (or the one that we created), or our hearts become hardened to others in an attempt to guard ourselves from hurt.
When we are focused on the negative, the rationale is that we will avoid disappointments, and getting hurt. If things work out, then that’s great. But if they don’t, then we aren’t surprised because we had a strategy in mind, and we never expected anything to begin with. They can’t disappoint us because we didn’t expect them to succeed.
We only saw their deficiencies- not what they could have become with encouragement. We saw how to do damage control should they let us down. We didn’t see the potential, nor did we develop it by mentoring them.
But, hey, we didn’t get hurt either. Then again, we don’t feel love, either. It’s a lonely place to be when you can’t depend on others, won’t let them in, and believe the worst because you never see the best- nor do you expect it. You swim in a world of negativity.
Trinity Dobbs discusses how we, as believers can see others not for the best or worst in them, but as He sees others. When we see others how God sees them, we begin to understand their heart- what motivates them to behave the way they do- and with that, comes love. It is not walking around in a cloud of unreality, or in the pits of negativity, but as seeing people as they truly are.
With this, disappointment rarely exists because God reveals their character to us and guides us in interacting with them. Also, it shows the person’s heart so that if they don’t fully follow through, we are more understanding/empathetic. Our response will be more of one of peace over confrontation or stress.
This feature and many more dealing with godly love in our upcoming issue coming out on April 26, 2019.