Before we can celebrate the resurrection in Easter, we need to take a long look at betrayal, an experience that isn’t unique to the Apostle Peter, but an encounter through which we all have lived. How many times have you been wounded by a person or entity’s words or actions that felt like betrayal? Often, this betrayal comes from a cherished source, so it hurts exponentially more. But through it all, we’re not forsaken.

In academia, we’re never to use such words as “never” and “always” in our writings unless we have parenthetically proven so in explanatory research. I juxtapose that tenant with God’s promises when He correctly uses the word “never” in Deuteronomy 31:6. “Be strong, be resolute; you must not dread them (whoever ‘them’ are) or be afraid. For the Lord your God goes with you; He will not fail you or forsake you.”

God knows me better than I know myself and “gets” the remotest nooks and crannies of my heart. Therefore, He can assuage those fears of betrayal in any circumstance. For me, betrayal hurts the most the longer the time span stretches in which I’ve been duped. That helpless pain of being lied to, cheated on, falsely accused, and denied oozes out like puss and infects those who do sincerely validate and love me. Sometimes, that validation ointment heals over the betrayal wound and even bandages with humor!

Allow me to illustrate. When I was in the trenches of divorce, my father was living with Alzheimer’s, dependent on his comforting routines, while my mom hovered over all of us in her typical she-bear stance. After a long visit with them in their Assisted Living apartment, Daddy began his prayer of blessing which was the norm in our family when one of us was heading out. I sat on their cozy living room couch, flanked on either side by them in their respective comfy chairs. Daddy marched through his prayer list of all five of us siblings, our spouses, and children. I was at the bottom of the list, being the youngest child. So it went like this. . .

“Bless Sheila as she finishes her doctorate and bless Stacy (my ex) as he. . . ” Without skipping a beat, my mom interrupted my dad’s prayer with her own prayer. “Father, you know Finlay isn’t in his right mind so don’t listen to that part!” And then Daddy picked up where he left off, intent on finishing his list! Now that’s authentic prayer!

My head popped up and I glanced around as if looking for witnesses to what had just happened! It was a hilarious yet touching moment that jerked me out of my pain and right into the loving arms of the two people I cherished the most. They were validating and loving me right through my dark hours of fighting betrayal.

Betrayal is inevitable, but so is love and support from those who truly are your people.

To what or whom do you turn in your dark hours? 

Indeed, it is not an enemy who insults me, or else I could bear it; it is not one who hates me who arrogantly taunts me, or else I could hide from him.

Psalms 55:12

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