An article I wrote about a lesson I learned a while back on letting go...
I guess I got too comfortable. I can’t think of any other reason why there’s been a shift in my relationship with a friend, but I do know one thing: It hurts. About two months have passed since we’ve had one of those good, old-fashioned, long-winded kinds of laughs together. And it seems like ages since our last true non-superficial conversation.
Somewhere down the line, one of us got hurt but we didn’t let the other one know of our feelings, and consequently, our disappointment in each other manifested in hurtful ways. I noticed that my friend began to pull back from our relationship a bit. Phone calls went unanswered. Text messages went unreturned. Our conversations slowly rippled from being fully engaged in each others lives to seemingly strangers passing like ships in the night. And what hurt me the most is when this friend looked me in the eyes and said, “Don’t take this personal, but I just don’t trust you.” I thought, "What?!"
I toiled for a while over the disruption of our friendship, in fact, I found myself in a place of deep sadness. However, in the midst of it all, I did what I always do; I threw myself on “the judgment seat.” I took a hard look at my actions, my words, my body language, and I judged myself. I took some time to sift through my role in the situation versus what I thought the responsibilities were of my friend. And you know what came out of my time in thought? These two words echoed loudly within me: Let go.
We've got to be willing to let people go. I learned that the hard way. You might have heard or read this before, but not everybody belongs in the front row of our lives. Our friendships are for a reason, a season or a lifetime. If your friends choose to walk out of your life, let them go; your destiny was never tied to anyone who left.
However, there is a lesson to be learned in letting go. Picture yourself holding a beautiful flower and then picture yourself smothering that flower. In relationships, we have the responsibility to allow people to grow. We can't smother others with our expectations, personal issues, etc. Nobody can know everything about you accept Christ, so don't expect the people you care about to know you the way you think they should; it's impossible. Allow your loved ones to make mistakes because mistakes will happen. Most importantly, letting go creates a path towards communication. Make it easy for others to approach you about you. Don’t throw away a good person just because they did a bad thing. The sign of a true friend is an honest answer.
The Bible says that many are the plans of a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that will prevail. To me, in this context, that means letting go of something or someone would be your way of telling God that you are no longer in control. And guess what? If that relationship is within God's purpose for your life, it will only strengthen and grow, regardless of misunderstandings, time apart and arguments. God's purpose will prevail and not your own. I think Oswald Chambers captured it best about relationships:
The purposes of God in your life are tied to certain relationships. To succeed, you must learn to recognize them. Remember Jonathan, who loved David even at the cost of his own life? Or Ruth, who loved her widowed mother-in-law, Naomi, and gave her a reason to live again? God has people like that, and you need them. But, some areas may need to be healed before you can enter these relationships. For example, you must learn to differentiate between 'using' relationships and 'heart-ties.' Even blood-ties don't wear as well as heart-ties. Allow God to work on you. When you're ready He'll make all the necessary introductions. In the meantime, get to know Him better. Make His opinion the source of your self worth because it's the only one that really counts. If your last relationship stripped you of your identity and drained you spiritually, use this precious time to get back on your feet. Begin today to love like God loves. He sees your imperfection, handles your rejection and loves you regardless.