Words

Dear One,

You say you want to know me; I’m afraid you never will. I’ve seen the way you are. I’ve heard the words you speak. I’ve watched your actions closely and know better than to let you in.

You are friends with everyone in the room…until everyone leaves.

You flatter to the face only to tear down behind the back.

How can I trust you after what I’ve seen? How can I open up and share my heart when your words would break the hearts of those who love and trust you?

How can I trust you’re not talking badly about me when I’ve heard your harsh words about so many others?

I can’t. I can’t trust you and I won’t let you in.

You’re not safe. You think you cover your tracks. You think your words are never known to the one you’re speaking about—and maybe they aren’t. But I’ve seen too much.

You make me want to hide. I stay silent to protect myself from you and the things you will say.

And yet, I know from what I’ve seen, that you talk about me too. I know when I’m not there to defend myself you are critiquing and criticizing my every fault and shortcoming.

I could never be good enough for you—no one can. No one is outside your reach or beyond your words

And yet you say you want to know me.

Why would I ever let you in?

It’s a fearful thing to let someone in. It’s scary to share your story, your faults and fears. It would be mad to share such vulnerabilities with someone you know will turn on you.

My secrets aren’t safe with you and so you’ll never know them. I speak my heart to you and you share my secrets with ten others.

Do you think talking about my problems will fix them? Do you tear me down to build yourself up?

Love could change everything, you know.

If you could love others in spite of their faults. If you could encourage rather than criticize. If you could hold your tongue and open your heart—that could change everything.

If I could trust you, then I could let you in. If I felt safe with you and loved by you, then you could know me.

I know you think you’re helping. I know you think we all have problems you need to fix. But that isn’t how this works. Backbiting never healed a wound, never fixed a problem.

If you could listen and not repeat.

If you could take the good with the bad and respect the journey we are each on.

Then you could get to know me. Then I could let you in and share my story with you.

But not until then. Not as long as I hear the words you say about others behind their back. Not as long as perfection is the standard and every fault is dissected.

No, not yet. Maybe not ever.

It is up to you, Dear One, to decide if others can ever let you in.

4 thoughts on “Words

  1. This blog immediately brought to mind James 3, and the warning of how much damage our tongues can do. Also the passage in the Old Testament where David laments with such sorrow over theback stabbing of a trusted friend. Your post is a very good reminder of how we are to treat each other, especially if we call ourselves followers of Christ.

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