Thursday, February 16, 2012

When Good Men Are Bad

When I was younger, I knew a very good man.  He was dear to my heart and still is.  This man took over the job of another man who seemed to be well respected by my dear friend and so, naturally, as a young man, I respected this other man, as well.  I saw him as good.

Then I grew up and my life helped me to drift away from this dear old friend of mine.  As a matter of course, being that this dear friend was my only real connection to this other man, I lost all of my connection to where he was or what he was doing.  I heard he had left the state and that was all.

Until tonight...

I found out some very very bad things about that man.  Not my dear friend, but the other guy. 

From the day I could muster my first thought, I have seen people as good when I first met them.  I love people.  In fact, I love people so much, I open my home and my life to everyone and anyone.  Rarely has it hurt me.  When it has, it brings me down hard.  When I am used or trodden upon by very bad people - those I previously viewed as good and kind - I literally weep.  I don't really get angry.  I just cry, inwardly mostly.

The potholes in life are beginning to add up and I feel as if I am becoming calloused.  The last thing I want to do is to start thinking of people as bad, initially, rather than good.  It is not who I am.

Then this happens.  I discover the worst in a person that I used to respect.  This very bad man who used to be very good in my eyes has now become the newest catalyst for the pressure cooker that is my suspicious self. 

Bad man.  I hate you.  I want to love.  I want to see everyone as worthy of love and respect.  But again, I cannot.  I despise the ground you walk on, the name you have made for yourself, the people you have hurt, the lies that you have become, the false goodness that you have portrayed, the many people that you have hurt behind closed doors, and your smiling face, as if the world is right.  There is now a new pothole in the happiness of my life and it has your name on it.

Shame on you.  Shame on you.

I find comfort in one thing.  There will be justice on this earth for you.  You have no idea of the force and breadth of the storm that is coming your way.  Your life, as you know it, will be changed forever.  You won't keep your untarnished reputation and you will be viewed by many parties as the evil, filthy, man you are. 

But that doesn't have to be the end.  When or if I assist in bringing you down, and down hard, I will be the first to teach you how to move on with your life, repent of your wrongs, truly reconcile with those you have hurt, and become a better, unrecognizable man.  Lies are not worth living.  Truth is better, even if it hurts to begin with.

I do not love you.  But you will write the last chapter.  Make it count.


  1. Thank you! Thank you SO much!

  2. My husband and I attended a spiritually abusive church, got through it and moved on.

    Then my husband pastored for a while and we dealt with lying and back stabbing church members. I got through it and moved on. My husband is no longer a Christian.

    Now I work with the most troubled people in our society that are not behind bars (ahem,some of them actually are behind bars. Some are not but should be. Others just need a little help to become better parents. I'm in social work. I get lied to on a regular basis.)

    Just recently, a friend confided in me about a couple I respected who were taking money from a volunteer organization that they spearheaded, my daughters softball league.

    There is no end to it.

    People are messed up everywhere.

    I do not believe the softball guy is evil. He was in between jobs and failed when he was tempted. I see that his character is not as good as what he projected. But he's not evil. I'm still disappointed. But my eyes are wide open and I know that I cannot have a false sense of security concerning this man's integrity.

    What am I saying?
    Gosh, I don't know.
    I guess, even as a Christian, I no longer put people in evil/good categories. I put them in a spectrum ranging from
    Really messed up through somewhat messed up through reasonably good character to stellar character.
    I also have an automatic and immediate 'buffer zone' that holds me back from putting people solidly on one place on my spectrum at first meeting. They can move back and forth as I get to know them.

    I guess, bottom line, I know longer think, Good Guy/Bad Guy. That thinking makes it easy to figure out who the bad guys are in movies, but it helps little with regular life.
    Some people are solidly in the really messed up category so I guess they qualify as evil. But in my job and in dealing with real people in the real world, I prefer to see them as messed rather than evil. And if their messed upness is running rampant and hurting others, then yes, if I can and should be a part of stopping it.

  3. Mara Reid,

    Can you contact me via email. I love what you said, but I want to explain my reasoning in private. You can find my email in the Contact Me tab above.

    Thanks in advance!

  4. Well said. Unforch I have been there there are walls up around my heart when I meet new people until I can suss out if they are bad or good. I hate living that way.

  5. (I am going to talk about Jesus but want everyone to know I do not attend church nor do I have any desire to attend church.)

    I think this is what Jesus meant when he spoke: Because iniquity will abound, the love of many will wax cold, but he that perseveres until the end shall be saved.

    Now, throwing out the fundamentalist definition of "saved" what is Jesus saying?

    Loving people will get screwed over. Many of those so burned will get hard-hearted, but in the best case scenarios, only for a season. If we can find the courage to continue to love in spite of our previous bad experiences, we will be "saved".

    "Saved" from what? In my opinion, saved from becoming cynical and hard-hearted, and also saved from being doormats for the con men of this world. We will grow in discernment and caution, yet keep the ability to feel and express good will and compassion.

    That's what I'm hoping, anyway. Once burned, twice shy, but I am going to do my best to keep loving. This time though, eyes are wide open. Make sense?

  6. Thank you Shadowspring! As will I.

    But, I will, to the best of my ability, make the evil pay for how they hurt those weaker than themselves.

    1. And that's why we love you so much! Let the hammer.....drop!

  7. Joe,
    Just clicked on link from "Hammer". Am feeling so overwhelmed today with all the evil in the world. Am getting cynical. I love your illustration of too many potholes. I used to believe in my judgment of people- now, I am not so sure. Am trying to get educated as to the balance between being open and friendly, but not trusting. I am trying to shed my "extending good will" toward strangers. Along with Shadowspring, I, too think we need to love, but without any dependence, initially, on the person's "goodness".

    Along other lines, I am cheering you on in shining the light on this bastard. How else are we going to protect the innocent?