Two weeks ago we started a new series called Broken Up because really, despite how I thought it would never need to happen, I broke up three times. Most of us do at some point, and in the middle of it we do a lot of things that make very little sense.
Our hearts break. And if guarding them was not a big enough challenge before, all the insides run out when we’re broken. We set ourselves up for regret well before we realize it. We say the things and do the things that are worse than what we ever first broke up over to begin with.
Where two weeks ago we found permission to cry, today we’re coming to a different sort of permission. Surprisingly this permission looks much more like red tape to begin with. But stay with me.
Communication needs to be broken too.
As you cry and when the dust settles, question yourself relentlessly about any inclination to be in communication with your ex.
Ignore all nighttime urges to get in touch with the ex-bf. Yes, all of them!
“Never doubt in the dark
what God has shown you in the light.”
In the stillness of the night when you’re thinking so much about what did he mean and what if he thought and maybe I should have, continue to take it all to Jesus. You are sleepy and emotional and will almost certainly regret that text, facebook message, passive-aggressive tweet, Gchat one-liner. You have no business initiating emotion-driven conversation in the middle of the night. Leave it alone.
“A [wo]man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.”
If he reaches out to you, beg the Spirit for wisdom to respond only so far as diffuses animosity and fosters affection for Jesus. It’s okay to ask him to stop texting you. Being gracious does not mean being friends or answering every question or checking in on each other.
About the only reason you should reach out to him is if you have been convicted of some sinful action you took against him. Even then, wait until morning, consult a friend who will require honesty as they help you investigate your motives, and do all of your communicating in the daylight.
Courage to talk for real may be the best litmus
test for how legit your concern is.
Avoid communicating via written word if you can. Muster the courage, the litmus test for how legit your concern is, and call him for a short conversation in which you apologize and neither expect nor ask for any response from him. If you hope he’ll apologize too or have any expectation other than to clear your conscience and extend peace as far as you are called to, keep praying and wait until Jesus works out those underlying motives.
“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” Proverbs 25:11
If you’re wondering how I ever thought I could label this wisdom as “permission,” here are your choices.
You could be a slave to your emotions and impulses, dragging your heart through the muck over and over again, drenching your pillow night after night for months on end because you just cannot leave him alone. You can do that hand yourself over to that slave master. But I can tell you right now you’ll regret all the time wasted and the drama you perpetually stirred. You’ll miss out on a lot of other things, but you can do it. You can give in to the sorrow and do whatever will feel right for the moment.
But. You don’t have to. You have permission to walk in the Light. The cross buys you freedom from the slavery of needing to know your ex somehow approves or understands. The Spirit inside you was powerful enough to raise Jesus from the dead; He stands ready to empower you to make a clean break, walking away, trusting your Father to sort out all the wrongdoing and miscommunication in His own good timing.
You have permission to give your inconsistencies and questions to Jesus.
I pray that you will.