Q&A

I have forgiven, but how do I trust again?

Every week we get in all kinds of questions and comments from our readers. If you have a question, first check our ever-growing Q&A page, and then send it to us if it hasn’t already been answered. We can’t get to them all, but yours might be answered and featured like this one below.


READER: A while back, a friend of mine seriously hurt and betrayed me. After three years of not seeing one another (her choice), she humbly repented, told me she was sorry, and asked for my forgiveness. I have forgiven her and we are starting to be friends again. But now what? How do I open my heart to her again? How do I start “testing the waters” to see if I can trust again? I want to be able to freely love and trust her again, just as Christ does with us. But how do I do this without being suspicious all the time, scrutinizing every conversation? It’s a hard line to walk, but I’m looking for some Godly wisdom concerning how to walk it in love and truth. Any scripture or words of advice would be greatly appreciated!

GREG:  While no Scriptures immediately come to mind that directly answer your question, I can offer some advice. That is a hard line to walk, and the balance is between guarding your heart on the one hand, while giving out appropriate degrees of trust on the other.  There simply is no “rule” about how much or how little to do this. What I can say, however, is that it will help immensely if you can learn to get all your worth, security, and sense of well-being from Christ to the point that even if your sister were to betray you again—which I hope would never happen—it still would not destroy you. If a person’s unfaithfulness cuts to the core of our worth, security, and well-being, it’s much harder to trust them.

I wish you and your sister the best as you restore your relationship.


Image by OpenSource.com. Used in accordance with Creative Commons. Sourced via Flickr

Related Reading

Sermon Clip: Generic God

“Let’s all just get along.” Is this what God and religion are really about? All we have to do is just be good to people? Almost all religions can agree on this, but it is a generic view of God. In this clip from Greg’s latest sermon, he talks about this generic view of God…

Sermon Clip: Tough To Love

Learning how to love the people in our life that we find challenging to deal with is often very difficult. This week in Heart Smart Greg Boyd looks at some biblical examples and instructions on how to love our enemies in the same way we love our friends. Full Sermon Here: http://whchurch.org/sermons-media/sermon/tough-to-love

If Sin Has Its Own Consequences, Are We Really Forgiven? (podcast)

Greg talks about sin and forgiveness. Episode 539 http://traffic.libsyn.com/askgregboyd/Episode_0539.mp3

Sermon: Kingdom Nice

Did Jesus’ disciples break up?!? In this short clip, Greg Boyd talks about conflict between the disciples and how they handled it in a Christ-like way. The little things we do in the Kingdom make a big difference. In the full sermon, Greg shows that the incarnation and cross are spiritual and physical realities for…

Sermon Clip: How Christians Should Respond to Ferguson

In this clip from this weeks sermon, Greg Boyd comments on how Christians should respond to the events in Ferguson St. Louis and how that response should always be in love and to help heal both sides. The full sermon is here: http://whchurch.org/sermons-media/sermon/heart-smart-qa

Penal Substitution View of Atonement: Did God the Father Just Need to Vent?

In this video blog, Greg outlines the penal substitution view of atonement which says that the Father poured out his wrath on Jesus instead of us so that we could be forgiven. This view is very common and you might even be nodding your head in agreement with that description. However, this view creates some…