I spoke with a young Christian man who was hurting over his divorce. He blamed her for hurting him, and she blamed him for hurting her, and they listed their justifiable grievances as their excuses to hold onto the pain. In reality, their marriage was never going to work. They both entered the relationship with hatred and sooner or later this hatred would inevitably flare-up.
The young man had been hurt by his father’s cruel words, so he had decided as a child that he would never be like his father, but would always be kind to hurting children. Sounds right, but his kindness was built on a foundation of hatred towards his father, so, sub-consciously, it was always tempered for his own value and self-worth. In other words, his kindness was always contaminated with self-value, to compensate for his own hurt, so when he saw people hurting other people it gave him license to blame.
The wife had also entered the relationship looking for relief from her pain, but like the husband, her good deeds were a camouflage for her inner secret hurts. Sooner or later there would be a collision of hurts. We all marry for selfish reasons but very few learn to swallow our pride and allow God to use the marriage to break our selfishness.
All of us carry these hurts; it’s just part of humanity, infected by Satan’s lust for power and control. Evil in people always uses hurts to put you below them. It’s a competition for position. ‘Hurt’ is just Satan’s way to blind you to the real issue of pride and self.
That’s why Jesus said … cast all your cares on Me because the Devil is your adversary (1 Peter 5:7), and that’s also why Jesus was wounded for our rejections (Isaiah 53). Only by faith in Him can you escape the Satanic cycle of self-destruction of put-ups and put-downs.
Most Christians think they’re free from Satan, but they lie to themselves. You can measure their lack of faith by their mood at the point of hurt.
The problem is, no one casts; they carry it. Why? Pride carries, faith casts. If you can’t cast it, it’s because of your pride. You can cover your pride with as much good deeds as you like to make yourself feel better about yourself, but it will never fix the underlying problem of your hurt pride.
Marriage and relationships is one of God’s pathways to expose this hurt pride in us. If you allow God to open your eyes to yourself (instead of feeding your pride by ‘blaming’), you will begin to see your hurt pride, and by faith in Christ, you’ll be able to cast it. That’s the only path to freedom. Forgiveness is casting, not carrying.
Blame is not a characteristic of The Holy Spirit. It’s a characteristic of Satan. As soon as you blame someone for hurting you or getting you into trouble, you’re simply affirming your blood connection to your first forefather, Adam. Adam was too proud to look bad, so he shifted responsibility for his own actions by blaming Eve. It simply locked him into Satanic manipulation; Satan was now pulling his chain through Eve.
That’s how it always works … if the man won’t stand for God’s laws and instructions, Satan will pull him down through the woman, and not only will he lose his own salvation, but his children will turn out to be murderers unless they themselves stand on God’s laws. They may not physically murder like Cain, but God will overlook their good deeds and judge their hatred as murder against their fellow-man (1 John 3:15).
What’s your reaction when someone hurts you or hurts your feelings?
The normal inherent sinful reaction is …. have a mood, blame, it’s not fair, hurt them back, hate them and excuse it because they started it. The only reason we would react this way is because we love ourselves more than God.
God said … when you’re reviled, don’t revile back. When you’re mistreated, don’t mistreat them back (Matthew 5:39). Why did He advise this? Because the moment you retaliate based on the foundation of hatred for hurts against you, you put yourself under Satanic control. Satan uses hurt feelings to control you. God uses hurt feelings to free you.
This generation has been taught … don’t let anyone tell you what you can and can’t do, so how are they ever going to do what God tells them to do? Sadly, Satan is winning the war and most will never be able to do as they’re told.
How do we stop this hurt-reaction cycle?
We have to love God more than ourselves. How? Suffer enough hurts till we learn to cast instead of defend our pride.
The real issue
The issue is not ‘hurts’, it’s hate. And the reason we justify our unfair hurts is because we love our position. We hate being put-down. We’re born with the love of ourselves and we have to hate this love if we’re ever going to discover the love of God (Matthew 6:24).
There’s only 2 types of love … you either love God, or you love yourself. If you love yourself, you actually hate your fellow-man and God. That’s why Jesus said that if you want to be His disciple you have to hate yourself. This doesn’t mean despise yourself, it means … have zero to do with loving yourself. You can’t love yourself and love God at the same time. To love God, you have to hate your selfishness. If you routinely feed on your hurt selfishness, don’t say you love God. You can believe you love Him and you can think you love your fellowman, but it’s a lie.
The modern church teaches that you must love yourself first before you can love your fellow-man. The Word of God says the opposite … you must hate yourself first before you can love God and love your fellow-man (Luke 14:26).
Selfishness is simply focussing on my hurt feelings, resulting in fake goodness and excuses to blame. The young man couldn’t see how he had hurt his wife’s feelings, he could only see how she had hurt his. Selfishness analyses and diagnoses from its hurt feelings. That’s why we have to hate it.
Focussing on serving God and faithfully trusting His higher plan by suffering my hurts for His glory.
If you love God and you’ve learnt to cast and you’re willing to suffer and lose for His sake, then there are times when you can retaliate like Elisha, you can withhold forgiveness like the Father (Matthew 6:15), you can call people names (Matthew 23:27), and you will hate evil and even curse (Psalm 109), but if you love yourself you can’t do any of these things without it being sin. Whatever is not of Faith and Love, is sin (Romans 14:23).
May God open the eyes of His remnant.
Pastor Frank Whistler