My friend was lamenting over her struggling marriage and my heart broke as her sobs ebbed and flowed.
Over the years, this friend has become a heart sister, and if there is anyone I would ‘knee-cap’ someone for, it would be her. (Okay, I would never actually ‘knee-cap’ anyone, but I’d definitely wrestle a bear… okay, probably not that either, but you get the idea. I -LOVE -MY- FRIEND)
During our visit, she slowly unpacked each “stone” that has been gathered in her marriage.
[ read my earlier post about Throwing Stones: Wounding Marriages]
The human part of me wanted to “defend” my friend and start polishing this collection of stones with her by joining in on her ramblings and reinforcing her hurts, doubts and fears. I am even inclined to add a few of my own stones to her pile, or possibly launch an attack on her husband in her defense…that is after all, what a good friend does, right?
Isn’t the job description of a “heart sister” a friend who commiserates with you so you don’t wallow in your painful places alone. Heart sisters agree to take up the other sister’s battles as their own, forsaking everything else that would interfere.
Many people might agree with this definition, but what if I told you that by falling into the “trap” of commiseration I would be responsible for helping her discontentment grow?
I could allow my words to echo hers and “flatter the wounds of her heart”. In her already vulnerable state, each flattery could easily lead her down a road that could be costly…it could cost her peace, her marriage, and her family. I could cost her the life she has spent years building!
Too many times, as gals who love our friends, we are quick to join their lamentations and start fanning the flames of hurt and discontentment that are already burning in our sweet sister’s heart. Odds are, we have been around long enough to have plenty of dry tinder to stoke her up good. Out of love, I could justify taking up her war cry of “I hate him!”, but what good will that do? Sure, I dislike that my friend is hurt…again. I cry with her because my heart hurts for her. I want to ‘knee-cap’ her ding-dong of a husband who just doesn’t seem to get it.
But I have a higher responsibility as her heart sister and her sister in faith. I am committed to speak His truth into her life because I love her.