If I’d known that girl when she was seven… that girl who ordered her brother around like a slave, who yelled and screamed at him to obey, who lashed out at her parents for not punishing him enough, who scowled at her stubborn little sister and called her unwanted…
…if I’d known that girl, I would have thrown up my hands and given up right then and there.
If I’d known that girl… that fourteen-year-old, the one with the weak will and the wandering eyes, who hid her dirty secrets from her parents and friends, who saw things she never should have seen, wrote things she never should have written, said things she never should have said; if I’d known that girl, the one who bound her family, friends, and acquaintances to moral legalism and grew furious at the slightest infraction; that girl, that double-faced deceiver, that sinner, the one who played with fire…
…if I’d known that girl, I would have shook my fist in her face and called her out for the hypocrite she was.
If I’d known that girl, the eighteen-year-old with the sharp tongue and snarky reply, quick to criticize and demonize, just as quick to elevate herself in a self-righteous haze… that girl, who hated those who got in her way, who melted at the slightest threat… that girl, who thought she knew so much, when in fact she knew so little.
If I knew that girl, that twenty-one-year-old who bristles at the slightest immaturity, who defends her own weakness to the point of breaking, who gets infuriated by the sins of others who parallel exactly the sins of herself… the same weaknesses, the same mistakes, the same immaturity, the same error, the same deceit, the same frustratingly short-sighted outlook, the exact same hypocrisy.
If I knew that girl…
I would have given up on myself a long time ago.
Thank you, Jesus, for never doing that.
The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing.