Now That I Know, Should I Confront Her?

Maybe you just found out he’s cheating.
Maybe you know now who the other woman is.
Maybe you’re the other woman, trying to clear your conscience.

Now that you know it’s an affair, should you confront her? 

That is one of the questions we (Shelley and Rebecca) have been asked most frequently. While pop culture suggests taking matters into vengeful hands, or having a knock-down-drag-out on national TV, we don’t agree. Both Shelley and Rebecca had very specific reasons for why they did, or did not, confront certain people.  Be sure to join this mailing list, for more information about the upcoming video series that will answer this question in more detail.


In the meantime, we recommend asking yourself these questions….


This biblical mandate (see Romans 12:18) doesn’t ask of us the impossible. It doesn’t ask us to play God or try to be God to anyone. It doesn’t ask us to be perfect. It reveals the ability we have to make powerful choices in our lives that, in doing so, increases our own peace so that we, in turn, can make a greater impact for good in our generation.

Whenever we’re riddled with guilt or bitterness or regret, we remain shackled in chains that have already been unlocked for us. But it has always been and will always be our choice to remain in those shackles or to cast them off and run in the freedom purchased us by the forgiveness of the God who forgave us long before we could have even begun to wonder how we could make things right with Him. He set things right. He initiated the forgiveness of all of our wrongs toward Him. And He is the One who makes us able to offer that kind of forgiveness to others, whether they realize they need it or not.

One final thought: whenever we see that a confrontation is necessary, it is vital that we take the time needed to examine our own hearts and motives first. The importance of this cannot be overstated, so please take the time to do this thoroughly by asking yourself and answering these questions:

1.      What is my motive in confronting this other person/group? If your answer reveals a desire for revenge, to put the other person in his/her place, or something of that flavor, please wait until your emotions have calmed down enough to handle the confrontation with respect for the other person.

2.      Am I ready to accept that the other person may not respond the way I would prefer? Take the time to release your expectations and desires to your heavenly Father. Going into the confrontation with an agenda can put both you and the other person on the defensive if/when things don’t go your way.

3.      Is this safe? Not to be melodramatic, but the truth is that some confrontations are unwise because the emotions involved can escalate in some situations putting one or both people at risk for harm—either verbally or physically. If it isn’t safe, don’t confront (or don’t go it alone). Common sense applies here. (As shared in detail in the above section.)

4.      What do I hope to gain? If you recognize that the importance is that your voice be heard, and not that the other person respond the way you desire, then you are probably ready to confront.

Remember … “the truth may be painful, but it should never be hurtful.” (James Eubanks) Check your motives, investigate your desires, evaluate your safety, and acknowledge your hopes before heading into a confrontation with another person or group. I believe these steps will help you to get your thoughts together for a respectful confrontation with just about anyone. (Just about!)

Go in peace.

 


Why Cant We Just Get AlongThis post is an excerpt from “Why Can’t We Just Get Along? Six Effective Skills for Dealing with Difficult People” written by Shelley Hendrix, Founder of Church 4 Chicks, and published by Harvest House Publishers. For more information on this book, along with a sneak peek and online ordering options, please visit: http://harvesthousepublishers.com/book/why-cant-we-just-get-along-2013/

This same excerpt was also featured on ValorieBurton.com (click here to see it there). 

Karen Rachels Cone Shares How She Forgave Her Husband

I, a broken person, live in a world full of broken people and we all bump up against other broken people with a predictable result: we get hurt. Life is like a trip to the dentist; you will experience pain. So, the questions come, what do I do with the pain? How do I forgive?

In my own story, forgiving my husband, when he made choices that hurt me and our children, seemed like a mountain I could never scale. Certainly without God’s grace and strength, forgiveness would not have been possible. Sounds easy: God’s grace and forgiveness. Done. That’s it. Have a nice day. But, what does forgiveness look like?

 

I didn’t want to be stuck. I didn’t want to be a bitter woman. And yet I felt trapped and helpless to release myself. My prayers to God went something like this: “Father, I hate this. I don’t want to be this angry and resentful person. I feel so stuck! Please help me to let go. Help me to forgive. Let me find freedom in giving freedom to my husband.”

God’s answer took some time and included several twists and turns along the way, but He was faithful to respond. Here are some practical things God taught me through His Word and through others.

1. Forgiveness is both a decision and a process. I need God’s help in both. Sometimes it seems the decision wasn’t real when the memories and hurts rise up unexpectedly; the emotions I feel seem to say, “You haven’t forgiven!” But I have let go of the debt. I just haven’t stopped feeling the cost of that debt. By God’s grace I choose to release that pain again and remind myself that I have chosen to forgive. Sometimes this may happen multiple times in a day.

 

2. Feeling sad, angry, or shocked is not being unforgiving. It is facing the evil and taking it for what it is. Until I face the reality of the pain, I can’t own it and release it. It’s not only okay to feel, it is necessary. No feeling, no healing.

3. Forgiveness is not saying, “No big deal. That didn’t hurt. Here’s a free pass to sin.” Forgiveness doesn’t mean getting away with sin.

 

4. Forgiveness involves payment of a debt. There was a wrong. It is a big deal. And it does matter. There is a cost involved. Sin always has a cost and always impacts the one who sins and those around him.

 

5. Unforgiveness happens when I am trying to extract that cost from the one who sinned against me. This seems just, but the reality is that the one who hurt you doesn’t have the means to pay. He is a penniless pauper. There is only One who could pay the cost.

 

6. Forgiveness means accepting that Jesus paid the debt not only for my sins, but also for the sins of those who hurt me. We sing, “The cross was enough,” but am I demanding more than Jesus death to cover my offenders sins?

 

7. “Forgiveness has begun when you recall those who hurt you and feel the power to wish them well.” This Lewis Smedes quote gives me a way I can know whether I am

8. Forgiveness often takes time and space for the broken. I often think of Joseph in the Old Testament and how God graciously took him far away from the brothers who hurt him. Joseph was given time to heal.

 

9. Forgiveness does not equal trust. While God gives me grace to help me forgive, He doesn’t require that I trust someone who is untrustworthy. God wants me to be wise with my heart. Again, I think of Joseph and how, even after all those years, he wanted to see whether his brothers had changed. He tested them to see whether they would care only for their own skins. He had forgiven already, but he did not trust them yet. Forgiveness is a gift, but trust must be earned.

 

10. Forgiveness releases the one in my debt, but the greater release may be my own freedom. I no longer have to keep that account. The ledger is clear. I can let myself out of the prison of the past. I am able to move on and live in today.

 

“When we forgive evil we do not excuse it…. We have to look evil full in the face and call it what it is, let its horror shock and stun and enrage us, and only then do we forgive it.” Lewis Smedes

 


KMRCone

This piece by Karen Rachels Cone was re-printed here, with permission.

To see it as originally published at www.souljourney318.com, click here.

Karen, a friend of Shelley Hendrix, helps to minister hope and healing through HopeQuest Ministries in Atlanta, Georgia.