Have you experienced loneliness, depression, sadness, guilt, emptiness, loss, grief, hurt, pain (physical, mental, or emotional)? We all have experienced some form of these throughout our life. As Jesus said, " In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33, NIV). We will have troubles in this world but take heart because He has overcome this world. We all know the golden rule and we all have heard that hurting people hurt people, but do we really act out our beliefs? Do we really understand others hurts or want to understand their hurts? Do we really treat people the way we want to be treated without expecting anything in return?
I cannot answer yes 100% to all those questions and I am sure you cannot either. We are human and we are sinful. Being a Christian doesn't mean we no longer sin, it just means we try to do God's will and be obedient to Jesus, but when we fail we repent and seek forgiveness of our sin, constantly trying to grow more mature spiritually and be more like Jesus.
How can we be more like Jesus? How can we be more obedient to God? By loving others, comforting others, encouraging others, listening to others, helping others. As the bible says, "And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love." (1 Corinthians 13:13, NIV). Love entails doing whatever you can for the other person, putting their needs above your own. If we focus more on others and less on ourselves, soon the loneliness, depression, sadness, guilt, emptiness, loss, grief, hurt, mental and emotional pain all fade. We have less time to think about our faults, our failures, ourselves, less time to be tempted by the devil's lies and deceit, and more time to heal others, focus on God's voice, and the Holy Spirits' guidance.
But what about those who abuse your giving nature, those who are users, those who are intent on hurting you, those who reject your comfort or help, those who are impostures? First, we must pray to God for help during those situations, then we must seek advice from godly, spiritually mature men and women. Next, we must still do our best to love others and help them even if all we can do is pray for them. Praying is not the last resort, it is not something small, prayer is powerful, prayer is the communication between God and us, and we all know how important communication is. If the person is abusive, then it is okay and right to walk away from them, but you still should and need to pray for them. Pray for their hearts to be made tender to God, pray for their eyes to be opened to the truth and to their sin, pray for healing in their life and for their salvation, pray for them to have godly influences in their life to help them, pray for their hardships. Forgive them. Forgiveness is a choice just like love, and we should quickly forgive others as God so readily and fully forgives us (knowing EVERYTHING we think and do, including the evil desires in our hearts). When you forgive them, the devil will try to bring up their hurtful words or behaviors to you time and time again, that is when you need to stand firm and not let those lies and temptations into your minds but stop it right there and pray to God for help, command the devil to leave, seek scripture, and repeat that you have forgiven "his/her name". Healing takes time but helping others heal and encouraging others, speeds up our own healing. Today, who can you help? Who needs an encouraging word, a hug, or a smile? Who needs a friend? Today, who can you pray for? Who doesn't know God or doesn't live a life that is pleasing to God? Who is battling with sin? Who has a hardened heart or eyes that are blinded by the world? Pray. Encourage. Comfort. Listen. Forgive.