Yesterday, I enjoyed a movie date with my sister and two close friends. We went to see Beauty and the Beast during Lydia’s school hours. My neighbor’s little boy attends there, too, so her husband picked up the kids while we enjoyed the movie. We had a great time!
It’s always fun to think about how I am like the beautiful heroine. But over the weekend, sadly, I was more like an ugly BEAST! In a rash moment, I made a huge mistake.
In short, I blindsided a dear friend by pointing out some (perceived) faults. I didn’t plan to say anything negative or disrespectful, but I really hurt my friend. I totally blew it. To make matters worse, I kept talking. I tried to backtrack and smooth over what I had already said. But the damage was done.
This friend has many wonderful and admirable qualities, but I didn’t get a chance to mention those. This friend is bold and courageous, yet gentle and caring. My friend has strong character and always seeks to do the right thing. This friend encourages me and challenges me to be my best. My friend is faithful to pray for me and Lydia and checks in with us from time to time. We so appreciate our friend.
Yet, in a few short minutes, I nearly ruined our friendship. At least that’s what it felt like.
So, I apologized and went home. On my own, I tearfully considered all that had gone wrong in such a short time. I had wanted to build up my friend, not tear them down. I try to encourage others, but in this case, I did the exact opposite. I was clearly in the wrong. I offered another apology, but knew my friend needed some time (and space).
The next day, my friend was much more gracious to me than I deserved—honest, but not condemning. Just like Jesus. There’s no excusing my poor behavior that day, and I hope to make it up to my friend soon. But trust is earned.
I’d like to say this is an isolated event. This type of thing doesn’t happen often. Even so, there are lots of other times I have messed up! That’s why I need Jesus!
Jesus is kind and considerate, firm yet caring. He does not jump to conclusions and is always willing to give me a second chance. The Lord is slow to anger and rich in love.
Indeed, Jesus offered mercy and forgiveness before I ever knew I needed it. He saved me according to His grace, not because of anything I have done or ever could do. I could never make things right on my own. (See Ephesians 2:4-5)
Clearly, I’m not perfect… but whether I act as Beauty or the Beast, I am grateful for forgiveness, second chances, good friends and God’s grace!
Heavenly Father, you are gracious and compassionate. Thank You for being merciful when I don’t deserve it. Thank You, Jesus, for taking my punishment on the cross. Thank You for loving me so much and not letting sin separate us! Help me love like You do. In Your Name, Amen
Questions: Have you seen the new Beauty and the Beast movie? In what ways are you like Belle? In what ways are you like the Beast? (Hopefully, I am not the only one!) 🙂
Tasks: Praise God for His forgiveness! Do a quick heart check to determine whether you need to offer someone an apology or offer forgiveness. Then do it!