The biggest waste of our attention and sadly some of our worse hurts often stem from situations we only think have happened. We can't actually prove particular words, actions or deeds, have taken place, but we sense it so deeply that we somehow convince ourselves it is or has happened. I refer to this as perceived injuries.Those situations when all the evidence points to the mistreatment or ill-behavior of another but yet still remains unproven. We link people to the crime on circumstantial evidence.
Sometimes we link the person because of past behaviors. We consider the old adage, a leopard can't change it's spots. They may just be at the wrong place at the right time, linking them to the circumstance by approximation but not necessarily by action.The imagination is a powerful, sometimes misused gift. The devil can lead us right into a storm of possible scenarios, imagined motives and tangled webs. These ill-begotten thoughts rob our peace, steal our time, and even destroy our trust.
For some, it becomes a mission to discover the truth, for others an opportunity to brood. The trouble with trying to uncover the truth is it may not be the same thing you are looking for--leading to embarrassment, hard feelings, and a whole new forgiveness situation (with you possibly and ironically on the opposite side of needing to forgive). Brooding only steals your joy, Jesus did not come to give you abundant life to have you wasting it wallowing in what may or may not have been said or done. Instead, I suggest a very radical reaction to the perceived injury. Do nothing instead pray. Give over the situation to God, and TRUST He will work it out according to His Will.
Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier. 2 Timothy 2:3
This was my comfort in a recent situation of perceived injury in my own life. The leopard's spots seemed very affixed, they had done it once, I was sure they would act the same way again. I had no proof, but yet spent two days convinced and hurt. I brooded, shared with others (leading me into sin of bearing false witness), and even plotted how I'd uncover the truth. None of it was healthy. None of this behavior was productive or healing. I went to adoration, and sitting before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament asked for His loving guidance on what to do. First, my prayers lead me to the Navarre bible, and then I was lead to the verse quoted above from 2 Timothy. The Holy Spirit reminded me I had only One person to please - God. His was the only opinion that mattered. If I tried to figure out the truth of the situation, I would only be entangling myself deeper and keeping too busy and occupied to do the real work I had before me for the Lord.
As I focused more on God, and His Will, the other situation meant less and less, and pursuing it lost it's appeal. My response instead was to pray for those involved that God would bless and keep them. I relinquished my feelings for revenge and revelation to God. I was so surprised at the peace I felt, truly I had underestimated the power of just saying, "Lord, I give this to you. I wish only to please you and put my attention on the people and situations you wish me to, all for your Glory and honor." Furthermore, I was able to accept that I may never learn the truth to why this person behaved this way, or even if there was another person responsible for the sudden change - it just no longer mattered. St. Paul's words replaced those uncomfortable, unhappy, and unproductive thoughts and feelings. From perceived injury to pure joy!