Belinda thinks I’ve gone bonkers. She loves me anyway, but keeps asking for a return of the old Donny.
The few times I’ve tried communicating my new beliefs to her, she’s responded by rolling her eyes or laughing in ridicule. In return, I’ve became a bit mean. My attitude towards her has been horrible. I snap or answer her questions with disrespect.
One morning after I returned from church she asked a question that nearly broke my heart.
“Why don’t you invite me to go with you? Don’t you want me to have a chance to meet Jesus too?”
Because I knew she didn’t really have a desire to “meet Jesus”, my ego caused me to respond with:
“You can make your own choices. I am not going to push my beliefs onto you. You know I’m going to church and you can just as easily ride along. You don’t need an invitation from me.”
Inside I knew what Jesus would say about the situation:
“You want me to use you to help others see my love. Here is a perfect first opportunity, and you’re blowing it. She rolls her eyes at you? She laughs? You think THAT is persecution? If you really believe that you’ve got a long way to go before I can use you to help anyone else.”
Sometimes she looks at me and I can almost hear the question she’s asking inside:
“What is it that changed this man I’ve loved so long? He claims to be so much happier now, but I definitely don’t see it in his actions towards me!”
The attitude has got to go. There’s no place for it if I want to reflect Jesus’ love in my life.
Since that day, I try to make a point of inviting her to come with me to church. So far my invitations haven’t been accepted, but at least they’ve been extended.
I wonder how many of us allow bitterness to arise inside at the slightest bit of ridicule from those we love? I know this is one test I’ve been failing miserably.