I make my way to the bathroom after yet another frustrating conversation. I shut the door and lean hard on the pedestal sink as I look at myself in the mirror. Weary words swirl like smoke around me,
Why must this relationship be so difficult?
Why can’t it look different?
And really, why do I even bother?
I close my eyes, open them again. I wish for my daughter’s magic wand and a fairytale fix to this real life mess. After all, there’s not a chance in the world things will ever change. We’re at a dead-end country lane, and all we can do is back up and travel the same gravel over and over.
It’s too far gone, too hope-gone.
My attitude resembles that of the man from the house of Jairus as told in the book of Luke. Jairus, a synagogue ruler, pleads with Jesus to come to his house because his only daughter is dying. While Jesus and Jairus are still en route, a man from Jairus’ house meets them along the way and tells Jairus,
“Your daughter is dead…Don’t bother the teacher any more.” ~Luke 8:49
Jairus’ daughter died.
With circumstances too far gone, why bother Jesus?
My own frustration asks the same thing. This relationship is too hopeless, too broken, too dead. Why bother Jesus with this anyway? So I give up on my prayers, on Him.
And then I’m smacked upside the head with a startling reality: In cherry picked difficulties like this relationship, I’m an unbeliever. Or at least, I’m acting like one.
I know this is completely wrong because I know Christ can do all things. And indeed, He did with Jairus’ daughter.
Hearing this, Jesus said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.”…he took her by the hand and said, “My child, get up!” Her spirit returned, and at once she stood up. ~Luke 8:50, 54
With one touch, Jesus raises the dead. With one sentence, He breathes new life into relationships.
So I don’t give up on prayer, but I give my prayers up to the throne of God, to the One who asks us to always pray and not lose heart.
We can’t always talk to people about God, but we can always talk to God about people. Don’t underestimate the real mountain-moving, ground-breaking, relationship-changing work your prayers can do to water cracked deserts, chisel granite hearts, and bridge broken relationships.
It is never too late for Jesus to move. Nothing is too far gone. We may not see healing at work on this earth, but we trust the Healer at work.
No, my broken relationship doesn’t look different, but my heart does – if only a little. It sees a new picture, one changing from hope-gone to Hope-dawn.
Help a sister out: How do you remember to press into Christ when realities of difficult relationships press into you? (Subscribers, please join the conversation here?)
Kristen Strong, Chasing Blue Skies