As I wrote before, I heard it clearly.
And then, all of the sudden, he did.
Or so it seemed.
Message after message calling me
beautiful, and special, and wonderful.
I had already accepted there would be no fight.
So what was this?
It was late, and he had been drinking.
"If you mean any of this, tell me tomorrow.
I have a feeling I won't hear from you."
I hoped I was wrong.
He assured me I was wrong and
asked me to come over to see him
"I just want to hold you in my arms."
It sounded wonderful.
But I knew it wasn't right, saying no
again and again, unwavering.
"If you mean it, tell me tomorrow."
"I will," he said. "Goodnight Gorgeous."
The next day I waited until late afternoon.
"You don't have anything to say?" I asked
"I'm an idiot." he replied
It didn't even take a moment to sink in.
He said it all hoping I would come over.
He wanted something and thought I would
give in if he said nice things about me.
It's worked for others in years past.
"Is that what this was?" I asked. Silence.
"A simple yes or no will suffice"
His reply, "Basically." and "I'm sorry."
Hurt and angry at his attempt to manipulate me, and also wondering what it meant about every other conversation we'd ever had, I argued with him for a while through IM. Finally he said, "If you want to bash me and scream at me, you can. I can take it." But I couldn't do it. I fell asleep instead.
God took that time to work on my heart, to get me to see past the hurt feelings.
By the next morning I knew that what had happened was a symptom of his own spiral. I knew that he didn't deliberately hurt me, I was just collateral damage in his own personal mess and his struggle with alcohol, one I didn't even realize existed.
I wrote him a long note about my own spiral and his, about walking in righteousness, about being able to fail fast, realize we've failed and jumping up to try again. I wasn't preaching to him as someone who was superior... I was sharing with him as someone who has needed to hear these things myself in the last couple of weeks.
"I want to be angry with you, but
I don't know if I can be.
I may be hurt and upset, but
I can't sit in a boat and
watch you drown
while I yell at you for splashing water on me."
I sent him my blog post called "Be still" and told him Jesus is fighting for him too. He agreed.
Maybe we can be good friends again someday. I don't see us ever dating again. That ship has sailed... and he wasn't in the boat. ;-)
I'll continue to pray for him. But his salvation and sobriety aren't my responsibility.
You have no idea what a huge statement that is coming from a habitual co-dependent rescuer, and how proud of myself I am for writing it and believing it. It's amazing when baby-steps turn into actual change.
“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift each of you like wheat.
But I have pleaded in prayer for you, Simon, that your faith should not fail.
So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen your brothers.”
~Luke 22:31-32 Spoken by Jesus, emphasis added.