Monday, March 31, 2008

Hasta aqui llego!




This is the third and final installment of my "Spanish-isms" series. If you didn't read the first post, go here.

Today's Spanish-ism, according to my Northside hispanic ladies, means, "It's gotten up to here!" This is what they say when a situation has come to a point where they must draw a boundary.

On Saturday at our life coaching class, one of the ladies I'm mentoring shared that she is facing on-going verbal abuse from a family member. Time and again she has subjected herself to this at family gatherings and otherwise, not only because he's her brother, but because she felt it was the Christian thing to do. After all, should you actually... (gasp) back away from your brother? Limit your time with him? Not include him at family gatherings or go to one because you know he will be there and he will say mean things to you?

Never fear, help was on the way in the life coaching class Saturday as I explained that God never asked us to subject ourselves to ongoing mistreatment in our relationships, even if they are family.

Sometimes people who don't have a situation like this in their family don't understand those who do. They will say, "they might be a liar, cheat, abuser, etc. but after all...it's your father/mother/sister/brother/cousin." Then they will give you a speech that starts out with something about "life being too short to..."

My question in response to that is, isn't life to short to allow yourself to be abused anymore? Some people believe as long as the person is family you simply excuse whatever they do in the name of "keeping the peace." However, are you really keeping the peace? Is there true peace when you are in nothing but inner turmoil? What exactly is real peace? Peace at all costs is really no peace at all.

Others who do know what it's like and have been mistreated and choose to continue to put themselves in position to be mistreated also do not understand when you take a stand. They think if they are willing to be abused, you should be willing to undergo the abuse as well.

I know a woman who basically laid her life down for an abuser, until his dying breath. Now that she made that decision she does not understand why others would not simply let others do whatever to them without consequence. After all, WWJD? No, no, no. While Jesus has called us to lay down our lives for Him, He has never asked us to be a doormat and subject ourselves to relationships that bring us repeated pain.

Misery loves company. Those who are mistreated and are perfectly willing to continue to subject themselves to mistreatment again don't like the fact that you are willing to break free and live a different life. For instance, let's say that your father is an alcoholic and puts your family through hell. Everyone keeps family secrets and walks on eggshells to keep the peace. If you are willing to break out of co-dependency and take a stand and break away, your mother or your siblings may not be too happy about that if they are not willing to do the same. They may even label your actions as "unChristlike" when they really aren't. They will say, "and you call yourself a Christian?" Bottom line is, when it's "hasta aqui llego" (gotten up to here!) you've gotta know when to draw the line.

Life is too short to stay in situation where you are being mistreated. Do you have to FORGIVE the mistreatment? ABSOLUTELY, YES. Do you have to STAY IN the situation where you are being mistreated or put yourself in position to keep taking it? ABSOLUTELY NO. That's where you say, "hasta aqui llego!"

Although I have ended the "Spanish-isms" series, tomorrow I'm going to share steps to help you in taking a stand and drawing the line when you feel too weak to do it.

No comments: