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Date: 03.22.17
Letting Go When You Have Lost Love

carli-jeen-365

There is something healing about walking a pen or pencil slowly across a page. This is one main reason I love to journal. Years ago, when I was grieving the loss of a dear friend, I wrote the following letter to myself during a quiet time with pen and paper. Perhaps it will speak to you if you are struggling with rejection, looking forward to the future, or letting go of a relationship that once was.


Some of the deepest rejections you have felt haven’t only been when someone physically abandoned you, but when they have misunderstood your heart. When they have done so, you have felt as if the deepest parts of yourself were ignored and unseen. Therefore, the true intimacy you have longed for was denied.

There have been times when you have felt this way that you have returned, in your heart and your mind, to a place in your past where you felt most loved. Going back there felt like home and the visits made you ache for what was. Yes, we all have memories that bring comfort, tears, longing, happiness, and sadness. But remember, Beloved, that allowing lingering memories with regretful thoughts of “What if?” to fill your mind is futile. You can’t go back.

Understandably, you have wanted to revisit those times when you felt loved and accepted. Those places of acceptance have been a refuge for your longings when love has disappointed you. But remember that your present, however good and radiant, will never be able to live up to a memory. Be careful that what was doesn’t become the enemy of what is. Dwelling on the past can create an emotional bondage difficult to escape. Then, when you want to love you will be unable because your affections will be tied to a memory that cannot love you back. And perhaps God would want to give you beauty now.

Consider how no two things in the world are alike: No two flowers, two people, two rocks, or two trees. One person in your life has this beauty, another that. One makes you laugh like a school girl; another brings out your intellectual side. Just as no two snowflakes are not the same, but are altogether radiant in themselves, so people are also uniquely beautiful. These are God’s fingerprints in the world.

Be wise, then, not to compare this person to that one, or someone in your present to someone in your past. To do so gives the enemy of your soul the opportunity to destroy your present and your future. You can’t find love now which will lead to love in the future if you will not let go of old love. If you compare those who love you now, and make note of all their shortcomings, you will miss the beauty that they are. Love is love because it covers over a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8) and imperfections.

When love disappoints you—as it always will—and you feel your heart has been overlooked and ignored, make sure you do not ruminate over what was. When “what if” thoughts come marching in the gate of your mind, do not let them in. They will sit down on your sofa, and soon they will have moved in and you will find yourself obsessing over the past and unable to embrace what is.

Lastly, look forward in hope because there is hope. Expect good. Know that God has love waiting for you in the friends and loved ones He brings into your life. Open your heart. When you give love away now, you will find it coming right back to you.

Posted in: Faith

Comments

11 thoughts on “Letting Go When You Have Lost Love

  1. Welcome back Shana! This is a beautiful post; thank you for sharing. For me the part that resonated and with which I constantly grapple is harping on the shortcomings of those in my life now and comparing them to s shadow of a glorious memory. It’s interesting, sometimes I reminisce eith friends about past situations and it never fails that one of us had a rosier version or memory of the truth. It takes hearing someone else’s perspective to snap us back into reality. I’ve learned to be thankful for my past but only in the sense that it was a stepping stone for my present and ultimately my future. Thank you for the reminder!!!

    1. Hi, Simone.

      Thanks much! Good to hear from you. I think that all of us have imperfect perceptions of the past and it’s great to have friends who will tell us the truth. God is at work all the time and is everywhere we are. . .including the present. It’s awesome that the Lord is teaching you to be grateful in the present. (Me too!) It takes some work and mastering of the mind for sure, but it’s a wonderful spiritual discipline that pays out huge dividends of joy and trust in the Lord.

      Many blessings to you,
      Shana

  2. I am currently going through an advent devotional that’s theme is to make room for Jesus. I really had no idea how much I have allowed to remain in my heart, I assumed that when I accepted Christ I cleared it out and it was all open for Jesus to move in and settle.
    What I have been discovering is that in fact I have been expecting Jesus to come into a packed house with very little room. I woke up today realizing that I lack Love in so many areas because I wouldn’t let Jesus in, and then your post today drove it home. I am hanging on to ideas,dreams, expectations and memories and there is no room to love in the now. What an incredible journey this advent has been, I love and appreciate your blog, the Holy Spirit always speaks to me through your words. Thank you

    1. Hi, Carlie.

      Good Morning! Thank you for your words. Your comment excites me because you are experiencing sanctification and transformation through the Holy Spirit and the Lord’s truth. It’s an exciting journey walking with Christ, and He is always teaching us. It’s so wonderful that He is revealing you where to let go of your expectations, dreams, memories, and ideas. We have such a faithful Lord.

      I am so glad that blog has been an encouragement to you. That means a lot.

      Thanks much,
      Shana

  3. Hi Shana! As Romans 8:28 reminds us, if we in good faith seek God, He will take every heart break and every tear and use it ultimately for good. Or as the words the movie Steel Magnolias says, “That which doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger!”

    Many Blessings, Ron

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  • Welcome back Shana! This is a beautiful post; thank you for sharing. For me the part that resonated and with which I constantly grapple is harping on the shortcomings of those in my life now and comparing them to s shadow of a glorious memory. It’s interesting, sometimes I reminisce eith friends about past situations and it never fails that one of us had a rosier version or memory of the truth. It takes hearing someone else’s perspective to snap us back into reality. I’ve learned to be thankful for my past but only in the sense that it was a stepping stone for my present and ultimately my future. Thank you for the reminder!!!

    • Hi, Simone.

      Thanks much! Good to hear from you. I think that all of us have imperfect perceptions of the past and it’s great to have friends who will tell us the truth. God is at work all the time and is everywhere we are. . .including the present. It’s awesome that the Lord is teaching you to be grateful in the present. (Me too!) It takes some work and mastering of the mind for sure, but it’s a wonderful spiritual discipline that pays out huge dividends of joy and trust in the Lord.

      Many blessings to you,
      Shana

  • I am currently going through an advent devotional that’s theme is to make room for Jesus. I really had no idea how much I have allowed to remain in my heart, I assumed that when I accepted Christ I cleared it out and it was all open for Jesus to move in and settle.
    What I have been discovering is that in fact I have been expecting Jesus to come into a packed house with very little room. I woke up today realizing that I lack Love in so many areas because I wouldn’t let Jesus in, and then your post today drove it home. I am hanging on to ideas,dreams, expectations and memories and there is no room to love in the now. What an incredible journey this advent has been, I love and appreciate your blog, the Holy Spirit always speaks to me through your words. Thank you

    • Hi, Carlie.

      Good Morning! Thank you for your words. Your comment excites me because you are experiencing sanctification and transformation through the Holy Spirit and the Lord’s truth. It’s an exciting journey walking with Christ, and He is always teaching us. It’s so wonderful that He is revealing you where to let go of your expectations, dreams, memories, and ideas. We have such a faithful Lord.

      I am so glad that blog has been an encouragement to you. That means a lot.

      Thanks much,
      Shana

  • Hi Shana! As Romans 8:28 reminds us, if we in good faith seek God, He will take every heart break and every tear and use it ultimately for good. Or as the words the movie Steel Magnolias says, “That which doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger!”

    Many Blessings, Ron

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