Being misunderstood is a part of this life.

A difficult reality, but a reality nonetheless.

In our current society, I have found that children are considered a blessing if you have the requisite one or two and then done, but the responses to much more than that can be varied. I have four, a small or large number, depending on your perspective. My fourth was celebrated by some and barely acknowledge by others. It all depends on perspective.

In biblical times, fertility was seen as a blessing and infertility as a curse. Blessings were tied to doing things ‘right’ and curses were seen as ‘obviously, you have some unforgiven sin in your life and that is why ‘this’ is or is not happening to you’. This type of response still happens today, but that is a topic for another day. Today my heart is pondering Zechariah and Elizabeth.

Elizabeth uses the word ‘reproach’ to describe her state in her community. The word reproach implies that she was an object of disgrace, that she was blamed for her infertility, and that she was criticized by her community. This is one of our few insights into Elizabeth’s heart. God’s own words assures us that she and Zechariah were blameless and upright and kept all the laws of God. We can learn a lot about their hearts in that one statement.

Misunderstood. I would use that word to describe Elizabeth’s place in her community. She knew in her heart what God said about her, but she had to hear with her ears what her community said about her.  That is a difficult place to be and it can either grow your faith or grow your bitterness. You get to decide.

Being misunderstood is a part of this life.

So how do we maneuver being misunderstood with the truth of who we are in Christ?

That is a question we must address as we move forward in this walk of life. I believe it has to become an internal tension we must grow to accept because the truth of the matter is that we will not always be understood.

We will be misunderstood.

What we do with it will shape our character.

We can defend ourselves.

We can be silent.

We can put up a wall.

We can protect ourselves.

But what if we did this instead: we accept the misunderstandings others have about us then we ask the Lord if there is any truth in the misconceptions about us, and finally, most importantly,  we lay the truth of God’s word over the misunderstanding and let the word of God determine our course of action.

Sometimes it’s being secure in the truth that we are doing exactly what the Lord has asked of us. Sometimes it’s speaking the truth in love with grace. Sometimes it’s letting go of the priority we place on another person’s perception about us.

But mostly it’s about trusting God’s heart towards us and being secure in the knowledge that he is for us.

He is for you. You can trust his heart because his heart is good towards you.

There is no misunderstanding there.

Let's be friends!

I write to encourage you that you can experience a vibrant, transformative relationship with God even if your past or your shame tells you otherwise. God invites you upward and onward, will you join me? You'll receive weekly devotionals straight to your inbox. By subscribing you'll receive my 7-Day Devotional, Kicking Perfect, as a thank-you gift from me!

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