Last week I listened to June Hunt’s testimony on my cherished Focus on the Family (free) app. I really appreciated her delivery as well as her content. God has healed her from many hurts and made her into a beautiful believer. She had been deeply hurt by her stepfather and, until God changed her heart, wanted to hurt him in return. Mercifully, God changed her. He changed her desires, her priorities, and her behaviors. She said that in her relationship with her stepfather, God helped her “see past his fault to his need.”
Since hearing that phrase, it’s been continuously rolling around in my head. Maybe it’s because my vision stops at fault with some people in my life. There are those, thankfully few, with whom every interaction hurts, disrupts, and derails my thinking to a destructive kind of “fault cataloging”. Maybe its because all of us are so needy. Maybe it’s because hurtful people may have the deepest needs of all. I don’t know but for me, there is something about being continuously hurt by the same person that makes it hard to see past their faults. Even as I write that, it disgusts me that it’s true but it is. I guess that’s why June Hunt’s quote hit me so hard. Even in repeatedly hurtful situations, could God allow me to see past that person’s fault to their need?
This past Sunday at church was Communion Sunday, always a treasured day to me. Our morning had been particularly hard at our house and I was extra aware of both my deep sin and my deep need for forgiveness. Communion is such an odd thing because 2 opposites, my utter sin and Christ’s absolute righteousness, meet in the perfect union. I bring zero to the table; Christ brings all. The beautiful, mysterious exchange occurs and Christ gives me His righteousness. He sees past my fault to my need.
When Christ looked at the depth of my sin and chose to take it upon Himself in a punishing death, He saw past my fault and addressed my need. When He daily shows His grace and mercy to me, He sees past my fault and meets my need. When He hears and answers my multitude of prayers, He sees past my fault to my need. As I think of Him, I find that all of His interactions with me are this way and I’m so grateful.
In praying that God would make me resemble Him in this way, He seems to be giving me opportunities to learn it. Again this week, I’ve had new hurts from familiar sources. I’ve found that seeing past a person’s fault to a person’s need is not a one time change of mind but a thousand small decisions to see that person differently. It reminds me of 2 things, first, my constant dependence upon God and second, His constant pardoning of me. In response, I worship with the lyrics of one of my favorite songs, “How deep the Father’s love for us, how vast beyond all measure that He would give His only Son to make a wretch His treasure.”
Lord, thank you for consistently seeing past my fault to my need and being the End of all my needs. Help me to compassionately see others in this same way, praying for them and loving them like you love me. Thank you for making this wretch your treasure. I love you. Amen