“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.” – Psalm 32:8
Wounds have affected a dear friendship of mine.
I had inflicted these wounds and they were inflicted on me.
There is nothing more tragic than a friendship tearing apart, and this particular friendship had been torn to shreds by our own hurtful hands. I found myself in a place of despair, seeking reconciliation and restoration that would never come without the aid of a Savior. As a woman filled with shame, hurt, anger, and sorrow, I turned to Psalm 32.
“Blessed is the one
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord does not count against them
and in whose spirit is no deceit.” – Psalm 32:1-2
Forgiveness first comes from the forgiveness of a Savior. Violations against the other are absolved. Sin is covered by the blood of the Lamb. My sin is no longer counted against me and I am set free, restored back to Creation, reunited in relationship with the Almighty. In my shame, these words from Psalm 32 were a solvent to my wounded soul, a healing balm for my broken heart.
Not only am I forgiven by a Savior, I am blessed.
I am sacred.
I am pursued by a King and desired.
I am loved.
“When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
For day and night
your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
as in the heat of summer.” – Psalm 32:3-4
I had been forgiven. My friend had been forgiven. However, the healing power of forgiveness does not remove the pain in waiting for reconciliation.
My friends, it is exhausting waiting for reconciliation.
Waiting; unable to restore what had been broken; unable to speak peace and love into the other’s soul; unable to approach the other, in fear of being turned away in anger and dismay. There is heaviness in the waiting. There is a groaning of the soul in staying, hoping the other will turn towards you and mend the bond.
Yet, there is beauty in the wait. There is beauty in hoping for restoration. There is beauty in holding out for the day redemption is finally claimed.
Hope is risky.
There’s an element of dangerous hope in the tragic discipline of waiting.
“You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.” – Psalm 32:7
In my waiting, God had become my hiding place, my protection, my source of goodness and healing. In my waiting for restoration, God sang over me the beautiful songs of love and kindness, gentleness and peace. In my waiting, my sorrow turned into joy and my anger turned into compassion.
Waiting was no longer a burden, but a gift. For in this time of waiting came peace, patience, understanding, and genuine love for my friend.
“…the Lord’s unfailing love
surrounds the one who trusts in him.” – Psalm 32:10b
I learned to trust. I learned to trust God.
…and, I had a change of heart.
“Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous;
sing, all you who are upright in heart!” – Psalm 32:11
In a beautiful moment of mutual submission, humility, and forgiveness, reconciliation finally happened with my friend, however wounds are still healing in both our hearts. It may take weeks, months, or years for our friendship to be completely restored. Sadly, it may never happen at all, however I continue to dangerously hope and trust that God has creative plans for this friend and I.
For our Lord can do immeasurably more than we could ever imagine.