Loyalty


Where does loyalty begin?  With a promise?  With a smile?  With a kiss?  Is loyalty so old-fashioned a concept that it doesn’t even exist between people anymore?  Surely it doesn’t happen after swapping spit on a date.  No.  There are many men and women left waiting for a call.  But what about deeper relationships?  Surely not husbands and wives even anymore.  No.  Many leave and annihilate that safe-zone that loyalty breeds in order to become free agents.

Is there loyalty among friends?  Always?  Surely family.  Blood is thicker than water they say.

Is loyalty misguided?  Are we not to stand by each other and believe that our loved ones will triumph over their trials?  Or do we throw them under the bus?  Do we convict them of the sin they truly are guilty of and write them off?  Why?  To save ourselves from the complexity of loving someone through their mistakes?  Because we must honor ourselves first and then others?  Or just because we like to judge? Or because we think loving people despite their flaws is committing ourselves to weakness as a victim?

For me and the way I treat people: loyalty comes in tandem with honesty, kind of like the marines have this concept of no man left behind.

I discussed before on this blog that I believed love was a commitment and not a feeling.  But this might clarify my point a little bit more and also broaden it to other relationships.

When you love someone you are loyal to them AND honest with them.  You tell them when they are messed up in their thinking and then you stand by them.  You don’t judge and condemn and leave.  You don’t talk about them behind your back.  You sit with them when they are in the trenches and help them when they are weak.

That is what we are here to do for each other.  Not to judge or condemn but to come along side and lift up and help.  Even if it means a longer day than you wanted or more “drama” then so be it.

There is a time and a place to call someone out on something.  That is the honest part.  But you don’t cut and run.  You just don’t if you love them.  Cause that is NOT love.  That is acting in your own self-interest.  Period.

And on the flip-side, love is also not letting them get away with treating you or anyone else badly.  It doesn’t mean turning a blind eye.

I know people who are great at telling people like it is but not loving them by sticking by them and helping them through to the other side. I also know a lot of people who aren’t willing to risk being honest and just excuse and ignore major things.  Neither is true love.  You have to have both.

And let me be clear.  I do not think it means “saving” anyone.  You can call someone out but you can’t “fix” them.  They either will or they won’t.  That part is up to them.  They choose to do right or wrong, easy or hard.

Love doesn’t leave because it’s not convenient and a pain.  Love doesn’t leave when it hurts.  But love does hold us accountable.

It is both strong and tender.  It is not blind.  It is wise.  It is exemplified in the life of Jesus.  He was nobody’s fool.

It will be harder.  But I will be loyal to the people I love.  I simply cannot be any other way.  It is my duty, my calling. and in a very strange way, my joy.

It is not weakness.  It takes more strength to turn a cheek and love your enemies than to walk away.  It takes more humility to honor the truth and the part you played in it than to paint an ignoble picture of others.

I don’t love casually.   I looked into the eyes of my ex tonight who seemed lost.  He left me.  He cheated on me.  When it became clear that he was not willing to repent I took the necessary actions to divorce legally.  I did not do that lightly.  But I still love him.  Because I am loyal and honest with him to this day.

Few people deserve this …I think the true number is 0.  None of us deserve to be treated this way.  I just choose to.  Yes it means I will hurt more.  I understand the cost.  But it doesn’t change my conviction.

 

 

 

3 responses to “Loyalty

  1. I’ve been reading your stuff for a long time. You wouldn’t believe the horror that I have lived in for over 2 years now…but the question I have at the moment is how did you know that your ex was not going to repent? How did you know for sure that it was time to “give up” on the relationship?
    It seems that to believe that love Hopes all things, believes all things…never fails……..it’s been a LONG road for me (28 years total with my husband) and I am still not “sure”……

    carol

    • I think it’s different with everyone but for me I got no indication that he had any intention of coming back. He had moved out and he was with someone else. Biblical grounds for divorce were met. If his heart gave me any indication that he was conflicted in the slightest I probably would have held on longer. But he didn’t and never has. It was a matter of me acknowledging reality and accepting his sin for his and realizing I could not influence his decision in any way. But it was very hard for me to do. We have an amicable relationship now. Mostly for the kids. But we can laugh and talk and parent together. Although our interactions are very brief. I’m sorry for your pain.

  2. Imagine this mess………mine did the same 15 years ago….left with another woman, filed for and completed divorcing me……for whatever reasons, mostly church influence….and I guess my resolve that “no one would love my children the way their dad will and that I wanted to believe for God’s best for him and our family”…….that is what I believed…and also his parents were supposed to be such Godly people (ex pastor)….they kept saying , “If only you would do this..or be that..”, he would come back to me……
    (Such a mind bender……)
    I waited 5 years…he came back. We remarried 🙂 It’s been a total of 10 years since we remarried..at year 8, he just out of the blue says “I hate being married”. I sat in shock, but knew he was once again in a severe depression . 6 months ago, he filed for divorce…but we live under the same roof and sleep in the same bed…….he no longer enjoys ANYTHING other than watching TV after work. He has had his knee replaced 2x in 1.5 years! (same knee) His pain level is SO high…he can’t even sleep…it’s taken a toll on his mind..
    the biggest change is that he hates life and won’t get help. He says he just wants to live all alone and have only his parents as his “family”. He says only his parents love him.
    My kids are now 21 & 25. They are so upset with him.
    He will have to sell everything we own to pay me half…which is all divorce is at this point..
    he has not taken steps to do that. We have court on Feb. 8. , but nothing will be decided on that day..it’s only 1/2 hour hearing.
    Just such a nutty life I am living…I can’t move out even if I wanted to…there is not enough cash. I do work full time (for my lawyer 🙂 but I’d need supplemental income from him…and he says he will not pay anything…….guess it’s up to what the judge says. But he has not even really separated from me, no other women involved (except his mother)
    I think I may just have a mentally unstable guy here……..but I can’t really decided when to completely give up……..I could love him, but he is kind of dead…so I live by praying the 23rd Psalm , going to therapy, staying close to my kids and friends and preparing myself for the worst….(working for a divorce lawyer and getting FREE legal service has been quite helpful legally……)
    but does not help on the emotional front…….
    so, Welcome to my nightmare!!
    Carol

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