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It Had to Hurt

April 27, 2010

I recently wrote about a betrayal by a friend at work.  That betrayal happened almost a month ago. That betrayal was devastating.  She was one of my closest friends.  We told each other everything.  Having her turn on me was extremely painful.

The pain has lessened and my cloudy vision has cleared.  And I have learned something:  my friendship with A. was not a healthy one on many, many levels.

The other day, as my husband and I were on a road trip, he told me that over the past few weeks he had noticed an improvement in my attitude.  He said that he believed that I had allowed A to become a bad influence in my life.  He said that the changes had happened gradually and by the time that he noticed them, he swept them under the rug instead of bringing them to my attention because I was seeming to be so happy about my new friendship.  He didn’t mention any specifics.  Instead, he asked me if I could see what he meant.  I was silent for a few minutes as I realized how right he was.

I allowed A. to influence my attitude and behavior.  Although she claims to be a Christian, her values and morals are very different from mine.  But because she comes from a “good Christian family” and has been a church-goer all her life, I was able to justify her behavior and eventually adopt some of it.  She swears, gossips, drinks (a lot!), and listens to music that used to make me blush.  But she plays the organ at her church and her husband is an elder.  She tells inappropriate jokes (that did make me laugh), wears skirts that are super short and blouses that are super low cut.  But she sends her kids to a Christian school and is very active in all the school’s events.  She is brisk and rude to people who she thinks to be beneath her, but she was always sweet and nice to me.  She has nice to say about her supposed best friend, yet I fooled myself into thinking that she would never be like that about me.

I longed to make work fun by working with a close friend, so I was willing to put blinders on when it came to things that should have turned me away from her.  I wanted to have a fun work environment, so instead of asking her to refrain from the inappropriate jokes and language, I not only listened, but entered in.  She was the popular girl who made me feel good about myself.  I was so excited to have a “fun” work friend, that I failed to see that I was giving up who I am, just to keep her happy. I didn’t even see it happening.  And what is worse is that I was having fun.

Sin is fun.  And temptation is sneaky.

But God is good.  And He knew that it would take great pain to make me end my friendship with A.

It had to hurt to make me realize that God has to be my best friend.

It had to hurt to make me see the sinful choices that I was making.

It had to hurt to make me repent.

It had to hurt to put me back on the path to becoming new.

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