Friends who encourage risky behavior, gaslight us, or talk behind our backs. A trusted partner taking advantage of us emotionally, sexually, or financially. Broken relationships can be caused by many things.
Even a simple disagreement with someone can lead to feelings of self-doubt, or escalate into serious issues.
If you’ve had relationship problems, you’re not alone. Jesus did too.
The more Jesus spread his message of radically inclusive love, the more he challenged authorities and alienated many who knew him well. In fact, his hometown friends in Nazareth rejected his teachings, ridiculed him, and nearly threw him off a cliff.
It hurts when people we know don’t believe in us. But it’s even more painful when those closest to us pull their support and stomp on our confidence. Even Jesus’s own brothers doubted him. This must have devastated Jesus.
But instead of faltering, Jesus offered a radical model of resilience and forgiveness.
He spoke of an unforgiving servant who, after being absolved of a huge debt by his master, refused to forgive a petty debt he was owed by another. “Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?” asked the master.