Betrayal is one of the most painful experiences in life. Although strangers may reject, mock, or ridicule us, only those we love or trust can betray us, and that’s what makes it so painful. This is exactly what David felt when he wrote Psalm 41. His enemies spoke evil and falsehood against him, but worse still, a friend turned on him (Psalm 41:9).
When friends gossip about us, make insinuations of wrongdoing, or tell outright lies, what can we do? A good reputation is very hard to recover after it has been ruined. And it’s devastating if one friend after another believes the gossip and turns away.
Something we must keep in the forefront of our mind is that our friends and family are imperfect and sinful and are therefore prone to making mistakes, believing lies, and hurting one another. And if we’re honest with ourselves, we have to admit the same is true of us. However, this doesn’t negate the pain we feel or the wrong done to us.
So how can we handle rejection and betrayal in a godly fashion? First of all, we should not deny the pain, nor should we let it dominate and ruin our life with anxiety, bitterness, anger, or a desire for revenge. Second, we can take it to God and ask Him to protect, sustain, and heal us (Psalm 41:2-4).
Although we may not know exactly why the Lord allowed betrayal, going through it teaches us to seek God’s approval rather than man’s. Vindication may not come in this life, but it will be revealed in eternity, when each one’s praise will come from God.
Bible in One Year: Judges 16-17