People of integrity expect to be believed; and when they’re not, time will prove them right.
This is my favorite quote. I first heard it at a conference ten years ago and have put it to use many times. Life would be so much easier if it didn’t involve interacting with people because individuals are flawed sinners. All of us are on a journey and most are just trying to do the best we can. But we don’t always respond correctly. Many times we hurt people—intentionally or unaware. Sometimes we’re even unjustly accused, misunderstood, or wrongly blamed.
I can recall two times over the past several years when I was either unjustly accused or tremendously misunderstood, which is one of my pet peeves. I desire for people to know who I am and to understand me and my motivation for all I do. But when I’m misunderstood, it seems the more I talk and try to explain myself, the worse the situation grows. So with each occurrence, I remembered my favorite quote, closed my mouth, and trusted God to bring the truth to light.
Maybe you’re walking through a situation that continually gnaws at you. Someone has belittled you, spoke negatively to others about you, or downright lied and misrepresented you. What’s the best way to handle it? My favorite way would be to blink and it all disappears, but I don’t possess that super power. Here are a few of the ways I’ve learned to help solve it or live with it.
- Confront the person in love.
It simply may involve sitting down and stating the issue and how it made you feel. I’ve discovered that sometimes my perception of the situation or what I heard was inaccurate. Other times, the person didn’t realize the results of their words. A few times confronting the person did not alleviate the problem. Either way, I felt better for being able to express myself.
- Keep your mouth closed.
This is the hardest thing to do ever! When no words will ease the tension, change the circumstance, or soften the hurt, then there’s nothing to say. We have to let our actions and integrity speak the truth for us.
- Let it go and move on.
Leave it at the feet of Jesus and walk away. For our own sanity and emotional well-being, it requires us to open our hands and let go. Once we’ve turned it over to God, let Him fight the battle, right the wrongs, and win the victory.
Do we wish everyone would treat us fairly? Yes! Do we hope our true intentions speak louder than false motives? Absolutely! Do we desire for all of our relationships and interactions to be truthful and peaceful? Amen! But in the real world, those desires will not always be a possibility. As women of integrity, we must believe that time will prove us right.
About Shelley Pulliam
Howdy! (A girl from Oklahoma has to use this as her greeting) I’m Shelley Pulliam, executive director of Arise Ministries and former teacher of hormone-filled 8th graders. But my real claim to fame rests in my award as second grade spelling bee champ and my recent gun-handling skills as I train to competition shoot. It helps me be on guard when Satan comes knocking. I’m a voracious reader and can frequently be found at the theater enjoying movie marathons where my record stands at six in one day. I’m a single, never married, who loves to pour into children at every opportunity. Let me know if you have any for sale. You can connect with me on social media. https://www.instagram.com/shelleypulliam/