Join us this week and suspend disbelief as we work on a letter from a character in a book I’m writing now. If anyone has a good answer or better insight–or any insight for me at all–join in!
As a guy, I don’t do this kind if thing–ask for advice. As a physician, I go to colleagues for referrals all the time, and I love to get a second opinion on a particularly difficult case, but when it comes to my private life, I keep that private. But now I’m not sure what to do. Maybe you can help me.
Last year, I allowed a wealthy, powerful man to persuade me that my fiance, Joy, was not being true to me. In fact, he had me convinced she was having an affair with him, and that she needed to spread her wings and fly in the big city with a well-paying job–working for him, of course. And you know what? I gave in. He set me up with sly suggestions, and he pointed at her car, which never left the parking lot for two days, which he said was because she was staying with him. I was working myself to death at the time, and I can only claim sleep deprivation. I broke my engagement to the most wonderful woman in the world. I’ve never been more miserable.
But when I finally came to my senses and went to talk to her, she’d already taken the job and left town.
Fast forward a year. My beloved Joy is back in my life. The jerk fired her because she didn’t love him, wouldn’t have an affair with him, and was taking on too many pro bono cases–not getting paid. I discovered her car was in that parking lot because it had broken down and she had no time to get it fixed. She didn’t want to tell me because she knew I was working too many hours already. We worked things out and are back together again.
My problem is this: The scoundrel is back in town. He has apologized, and he seems to have changed, but I don’t know what to think. He wants to talk to me about yet another woman he thinks he loves–and she’s Joy’s best friend!
What do I tell this man of means, who uses his money to buy businesses and people and have others do his bidding? How do I remain calm in his presence? He wants to come to me, now, with his questions about love and women? I’m a Christian. He is not. All I know to tell him is seek Christ. Is that all I need to say?
Wow, you’ve been run over by a steamroller! I’m impressed that you’re seeking advice for this, because most men I know would simply punch this man out and tell him to get lost. But you have a conscience, and perhaps you see a hurting man here. I don’t know, it’s just a guess. I hope it isn’t because you fear his money and power.
First of all, make sure you let Joy know you trust her. After all that happened, she must be feeling a little raw, maybe a little uneasy. She might think you’ll fall for this man’s lies again. Just reassure her.
Second, talk to this man. Be bold. Straight talk is sometimes necessary to get through to a person. Tell him that if he’s changed, you need to see the fruit of that change. And if you are a Christian, you know what he needs.
As for the woman he thinks he loves? She must know what he’s like, but if she doesn’t, she should be told. Let Joy handle that. You handle the troubled man. Even stand beside him and show him the love of Christ in a way he might never have seen before. People who hurt others are often hurting, themselves, and though you must protect yourself from them, you will also want to put an end to the darkness forever. God loves him. Show him that, and be bold. Be brave. Be the man you were meant to be.