You don’t have to hurt.

By Steve Austin | faith

Jun 23

This week has personally been the hardest week I have had in more than a year.  I was wounded by someone very close to me: someone who has been shown quite a lot of grace.  It really hurt.  I was shocked and stunned and all I wanted to do was run far away.  I wanted to disappear.  I wanted to be a turtle and slide back into that shell and let the world pass me by.
I left the situation almost as soon as it started, because I just couldn’t take it.  I was hurt, and this person hurt some of the people I love most in my life.  I packed up my little boy and my sweet wife, and we booked it out of there.

I hoped that a few days of distance would allow things to cool off, in hopes that we could reconcile and move past this whole nasty, horrible thing.  That didn’t happen.  Things only became worse; so, after much prayer, talking with my wife, my two best friends, and my counselor, I decided to make a hard decision to separate myself from this person until further notice.

Forgiving someone does not mean that you have to be their best friend after the fact.  Forgiving someone doesn’t me that you have to allow them to hurt you again.  Forgiving someone doesn’t me that you can’t protect yourself in the future.  You can forgive and move on with your life.  You don’t have to walk around with bitterness and anger, but you can walk away from a potentially hazardous person for the sake of your own mental and emotional health.

It is okay to tell someone, “I forgive you, but I will not give you the opportunity to hurt me again.”

You do not have to be a doormat in order to be a Christian.  Turning the other cheek doesn’t mean you stand around, just waiting to be smacked around.  You don’t have to be surrounded or deeply connected to people who don’t support you.  Surround yourself with people who are in your corner and believe in you.  People who truly love you and are glad you’re on the planet.

You CAN stand up for yourself, knowing that God is for you, that He will never fail you, that He is constant and trustworthy and loving and compassionate.

People will fail you. 

Circumstances will let you down.

Sometimes this life absolutely sucks, but God will never forget us or stop loving us.  Ever.

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About the Author

Steve Austin is an author, speaker, and life coach who is passionate about helping overwhelmed people learn to catch their breath. He is the author of two Amazon bestsellers, "Catching Your Breath," and "From Pastor to a Psych Ward." Steve lives with his wife and two children in Birmingham, Alabama.

  • Hi, Steve
    It’s hard to decide to break away from a relationship. I had three in the last few years that had to be severed. It wasn’t healthy for them to continue with their behavior, and it wasn’t healthy for me to keep being a verbal punching bag, or to be torn down until I was immobilized in ministry and life in general. I did all I could to be at peace, but we are told “Insomuch as it depends on you…” It takes two to make a relationship. They saw no need to behave any differently. It was time to let them go.

    One of the relationships was one out of which Jesus, quite literally, walked me. There was no doubt that it was His will.

    It felt like they died, we’d been close for many, many years (one nearly my entire life). There was a time of mourning – followed by a time of growth as Jesus restored my heart and set me free.

    May this be a time of healing and restoration for you and your family as well.
    In Jesus’ name, amen


    • Steve Austin says:

      Hey my friend,That’s exactly where I’ll be going in my continuation of this blog…that you do not have to be someone’s punching bag. It isn’t healthy and it isn’t fair to those around you who love YOU!

      Thanks for taking the time to respond to this entry, it means the world to me. 🙂

      This relationship is about as close as you can get…or atleast that’s how it is supposed to be, and it sure hurts, but I can’t be guilted into just overlooking my own mental and emotional health any more.

      Thanks for the prayers of healing and restoration–I pray that for the whole wide world.


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  • Brandon Tilford says:

    I pray that God sends abundant peace your way, my friend. In my own trials, when I have nothing to say but “life sucks,” God sends little reminders about how awesome He and this life actually are. Perhaps they don’t remedy the situation, but they lift me up in an otherwise darkened valley. I pray he does the same for you and your family. I look forward to seeing you again soon, Steve!

    • Steve Austin says:

      What a plasant surprise, Tillie!
      I appreciate the prayers and the encouragement.

      Sometimes life really does suck, but I am surrounding by folks who really do love me…and for that, I am thankful.

      See you soon!

  • starshimmers says:

    Hi Steve, i can so relate to this post, my husband was also accused of something so horrible by one of his own family, a person i have known for 15 years, sometimes words said cannot be taken back, my husband was unable to speak to professionals about this as he just felt he had been labeled and there was no proof ones word against the other, i was deeply hurt by this person and their actions and they destroyed many peoples lives, my husband unfortunately never found peace and a few years later he committed suicide of course there were other factors too, but that one floored him and messed up his relationship with his girls and myself. i have also had to learn how to forgive but as you say, yes i forgave them but they dont have a right to be near me or my girls, i will never trust them again, they live their life and i live mine, they were strictly told not to attend the funeral. i couldnt believe they even asked. i still have not healed from this as i feel there is no closure, no proof. it is a terrible place to be and im sure will take most of my life to get over it if i ever do. thanks for the post it was so heart felt.

    enjoy it

    • Steve Austin says:

      Michelle, I am sorry it took so long for me to respond. I was out of town all last week on business and I have been home and sick since Monday! I appreciate your time to read and respond with such vulnerability. It sounds like your family has faced a terrible tragedy and only God can heal such things. I encourage you to read my latest post, “Love is the only way.” I haven’t arrived, but God is teaching me through this dark place.
      Be well,

  • […] 6.  You Don’t Have to Hurt […]

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