Current Challenge

By Kathryn Barney

I am currently facing a difficult challenge that is cutting me to my core. I have been through more difficult trials. Much more difficult. But this one is making me rethink my very purpose in life.

I have a relationship with a person close to me that is tumultuous. I work diligently at praying and studying and finding ways to reach her and help her feel loved. She doesn’t feel loved. She has made horrible accusations about me – both to me and to others that I love – and has cut right to the core of who I believe I am, of what I feel my guiding purpose is.

More than anything, I want to love her in the way she needs to be loved. I haven’t discovered yet what that is. It seems like everything I try makes the situation worse.

Even when she does and says hurtful things to me, I try (and sometimes fail) to keep in my mind the image of her true self. I believe that she is truly an incredibly generous, light, gifted person who is responding from a place of deep trauma and pain. I choose to see past the pain. I can’t remove her pain or heal it for her, but as I focus on her positive traits, I believe that those traits are the ones that she will eventually be comfortable sharing with me.

When I vent my frustrations about her, I am attracting her negative qualities into my life. I have not always succeeded about keeping my frustrations to myself, but I have recommitted myself to doing just that. If I ever choose to talk about negative things that have happened, it will only be with the end goal of finding a solution or of healing our relationship.

I know this might be a long journey. I am not responsible for healing her (that’s what Christ is for). I am only responsible for the way I treat her. My actions may not have an immediate effect on her, but they will have an immediate effect on me. As I choose to respond lovingly to her, I will become a stronger person and I will feel more love toward her.

I have a goal statement about her, about discovering the perfect method of reaching her, that I read daily. When the time is right, everything will come together and she will know she has been loved. I accept that it may be in the next life, but I know it will happen.


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Kathryn Barney
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