I had thought I was a good person. I always tried to be. Like other Christians, I tried to follow Christ, with him as my example for living. But I’ve been looking back at my behaviour over the past few years and feel ashamed.

More and more – I’m recognizing how easy it is when I’m hurt, to hurt right back. So unlike Jesus. Not that I want to hurt back. Not at all. But I do talk to others about where my pain came from. Can’t avoid it. How can you keep quiet those things that cause so much suffering? How can you not cry out in pain, tell your doctor, your counselor, your friends, the crisis line?

Expression is a basic human need – and I think that must especially hold true for people with disordered emotions like BPD. And that becomes a dangerous thing, especially for one such as me, a person living with over-sensitivity – a person who feels pain deeply and has a need to respond. How badly I need DBT, the treatment that helps people like me control their emotions better!

And how does my response to suffering line up with the Jesus I try to follow? How did Jesus respond to the unjust suffering he went through? Did Jesus tell people how his pain affected him? As I read what follows, I was shocked at how far my behaviour was from his. Why it has taken so long for me to see?

These are some of the verses I landed on:

“He committed no sin,
and no deceit was found in his mouth]

 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.

1 Peter 2:22-23

Quoting from The Suffering Jesus, a sermon that comes from Grace to You: (https://www.gty.org/library/sermons)

All the accusations against Him, all the abuse, all the cruelty, all the suffering was absolutely unjust.  And because He never retaliated in a sinful way, He’s a perfect model, the perfect model.  He is the most unjustly treated human being who ever lived. And because He was perfect and all the mistreatment of hell was thrown against Him and He never sinned, He is the perfect model of how you and I are to respond to unjust treatment. 

How was Jesus able to do this? Verse 23 shows that “he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.” Jesus left it with God. I wish I could do a better job of that.

Jesus. The perfect model. And me? Ashamed to see how much of a sinner I am. 1 Peter 3:9 says “Don’t return evil for evil, or insult for insult but give a blessing instead.”

I want to be like that, Lord! And I have tried often. If I hurt people, it was not my intent.  How I regret the many times I’ve failed! Lord, help me grow to be more like you. Is it possible for a sinner like me?

Lord Jesus, you know how the trauma I’ve lived with all my life has affected who I am today, a person living with emotional dysfunction (BPD).  So, Lord, I could never be anything close to what you are. Please help my failings!

But I will keep striving to be a better person. To grow in my ability to serve you well.

Please hear me Lord. Help me keep you close, allowing you to lead. Always.

Marja