This week I’ve been think of one of my most used bible principles. The bible is full of hidden gems, so precious yet so obscure to most preachers who really never have experienced the sort of intimacy most of us, as brides have been blessed to experience. One such gem that is “totally life-changing” as one of my DIL loves to say. The gem is living with others in an understanding way. And though “others” can be either gender, I’ve primarily used it when dealing with other women in our lives (friends, sisters, aunts, coworkers, DIL, MIL, etc. etc. etc.) I do believe it also works when applied to men when He calls us to do so. Yet, I believe it applies primarily to women who are designed by our Creator as uniquely complicated due to being led, motivated and often controlled by our hearts.
How this works is simply this. Due to painful hurts, most women mask, press down or ignore pain which they then, often unconsciously or even sometimes intentionally cause them to hurt others. To hurt us. It’s with the most difficult women in your life that this principle, this gem, works so amazingly. And for this to work, you must have a strong intimacy with your HH, who plays the primary role in this principle.
Years ago I found it really difficult to deal with one of my DILs and what I wanted was to really really loved her deeply. So I simply asked Him how He could make this happen. Remember, He wants His brides to be like who we are One with, and He is the Man who gave up His live “while we were yet sinners.” Therefore, when someone is unkind or brash or even flings insult our way, due to His love for us, we can love them. Really love them and not “count their trespasses.” Love them as He wants us to do passing on His love to them.
So when I asked Him to help me, what He did was this—He reminded me of this verse that is intended to be applied to a relationship with a woman.
“...live [with her] in an understanding way, as with a weaker vessel, since she is a woman; and grant her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life...” (1 Pet. 3:7).
Yes, this verse was primarily designed for husbands to love their wives, which we all know, can oftentimes be the most difficult feat imaginable for any man 😉 But, this principle absolutely works when applied by anyone.
As soon as I began to really want to deal with her in “an understanding way” is when He did the most extraordinary thing, He began to show me in my mind’s eye and heart all the many reasons to love her! First was how much I knew and witnessed time and again how much she loved my son. Almost like a movie playing, He showed me so many reasons to love her. Really and truly love her.
The next thing He did was to show me all the ways she’d been hurt growing up. Like all but one of my four DIL, her father had run off with an OW. There were many more things He showed me, times or things I knew about her, and even some things I didn’t really know, and what I knew caused her to react or act in ways that were less than lovable.
Soon after I shared this insight with Tara, from the principle to the specifics about her SIL, Tara, of course, instantly embraced and benefited from them the same way I had. And from that moment on—it’s been easy to love this special woman the way I knew He wanted us to love her.
Then, yes, of course, we excitedly began using this same principle with each and every other woman in our lives when faced with an insult or lashing out or painful interaction. It made loving others so much easier and unbelievably rewarding.
Now for what it will not do.
Does this mean you will never feel hurt by them? No. Insults hurt. But here’s how He uses it for good. By still allowing us to feel the pain of insults, first off, we remember. It helps us to remember how painful it is to hurt in order for us to have compassion for others. When we are far removed or never feel pain again, it’s impossible for us to continue to have empathy for others who are hurting. Secondly, it keeps us real. Religion and religious people are not real. They are falsely pious and this repulses the One who says, He “wept.” Our HH felt and feels our pain, therefore for us to love as He does, we too, continue to feel pain. And yet…
Just as you experience every day, the moment we go to Him in our pain, He is right there to comfort us. He shows us the situation with such wisdom and understanding as long as we ask and simply sit quietly to hear what He longs to say to us. This means that each encounter of pain we are asked to experience results in us walking away with an even deeper, more intimate, more loving relationship with Him than before He asked us to go through it. And this is another reason why we can always “smile at the future.”
So when you are called to be slapped, and you turn the other cheek instinctively, and quite possibly turn it back again and again—times when He wants you to feel the sting of multiple blows from someone you love dearly (as He did with me which prompted this Living Lesson). You will come through it and experience the greatest high, due to the greatest Love imaginable.
Don’t be afraid to ask Him to help you through this principle. In this life we will have tribulation, everyone will. But what sets us apart as His bride is that we can actually benefit from those tribulations. Read each of these truths slowly...
John 16:33 “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” KJV
“These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” NASB
“I have told you these things so that you will be whole and at peace. In this world, you will be plagued with times of trouble, but you need not fear; I have triumphed over this corrupt world order." VOICE
Jesus answered them, “Do you finally believe? In fact, you’re about to make a run for it—saving your own skins and abandoning me. But I’m not abandoned. The Father is with me. I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world, you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.” MSG
"And everything I’ve taught you is so that the peace which is in me will be in you and will give you great confidence as you rest in me. For in this unbelieving world you will experience trouble and sorrows, but you must be courageous, for I have conquered the world!” TPT
“Cheer up!” Jesus has taken away the power this world has to defeat us and has conquered it for us. Peace is resting in his victory."
“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” NLT