Did your stomach quiver as you reached out to them, trembling a little as you extended a hand of peace? Did you invite them into conversation, painstakingly working to make your sincerity clear, hoping to wash away mistrust and old misunderstandings, to mend the bridge between you?
Did they tell you it’d take time? Did you count the months, maybe even the years, before anxiously reaching out again?
Did you feel that odd mix of fear and hope, of courage and fragility, praying your invitation would be the start of renewed trust and a friendship restored?
Then did your heart drop as they laughed and waved it off, assuring you no such conversation was needed? Did you feel the punch to your gut when you later learned they were saying angry things about you to others?
Did you ask God what on earth He hoped you’d gain from this stinging thorn in your side? Did you lose count of the days this open wound destroyed your peace, of the hours wasted in distress over this person rather than enjoying the friends who wanted to be in your life?
Did He ask you to forgive this person day in and day out, regardless of the pain? And did He finish with a number, seventy times seven?