Unfortunately, most of us have come to realize that betrayal is part of the brokenness of the human condition. Sometimes we are the one who is betrayed, and sometimes we are the one who (intentionally or subconsciously) betray someone else. By definition a betrayal is a disappointment, disclosure or exposure of entrusted information. What hurts the most about a betrayal is that it is committed by someone considered loyal and close, who we would expect.

Just take a moment to think about betrayals that come to mind….what did you come up with? Likely, you first thought of a personal, and maybe still painful, betrayal. Then maybe your mind went to a recent story of betrayal such as Ed Snowden. You probably ended up thinking of a biblical betrayal, when Judas betrayed Jesus.

Judas the betrayer

Judas the betrayer

Why did these betrayals happen in the first place? Usually, the betrayer is disillusioned with what is going on. They feel that things are not going according to plan, and think that if they take matters into their own hands, even if it is at the expense of others, the outcome will be more favorable. So how do we make sure that we don’t betray the people we care about?

First, devote time to prayer and personal reflection. This will keep you focused on the overall goal, and keep you grounded in your relationship with God. In addition, make sure you are held accountable. When you feel alone, and have no one to talk to about your disappointments, you are more likely to make a hurtful decision. Joining small groups and making connections with people will help you remain positive and allow you to help others as well. Finally, take responsibility for your actions, don’t make yourself a victim. Both Judas and Peter betrayed Jesus, so why do we remember Judas as the ultimate betrayer? Because Peter took ownership of his actions, asked for forgiveness from the one he had wronged and sought a relationship with his Lord.

When we are betrayed we close ourselves off, to try and protect against future pain. When we betray those we care for, it can be hard to get back into their good graces. The good news is that if we are open to the love of Jesus Christ, He will embrace our brokenness. His love will help us be able to open our hearts and let others in. His grace will cover us, allowing us to be restored and forgiven for our transgressions.