Loving a Friend Who Was Gossiping

Learn to love and forgive like Joseph! A 14-year-old girl explains how.

By Devon Harrison, age 14

Categories: Friendship, Jesus' Commandment - To Love as He Loved, Loving and Forgiving

When we hit middle school, one of my long-time friends began to hate me. She began using all things thing I told her against me. I hated this, so I began to get back at her. Realizing that she was having more control over me, she started getting other people to go against me as well.

I realized that she was getting jealous of what I had and the way I was living life. I had a boyfriend she wanted; I had other great friends; and I was getting attention. As soon as she started taking over, I began to see my whole life unravel before my eyes.

So I prayed. I realized that I needed to love her -- no matter what. This was very hard for me, considering all the horrible things she did to put me down. I decided to be like Joseph. Joseph kept on loving his brothers, even though they threw him into a pit, thought about killing him, and sold him into slavery. And when his brothers came to him in Egypt to ask for food (not knowing that they were talking to Joseph), Joseph forgave them. He even invited them to come live with him in his house of forgiveness. Joseph was able to get out of himself and love the people who had hurt him the most.

This is what I had to do with this girl. I had to love her unconditionally and learn to get out of myself. I had to be the Devon I knew I wanted to be -- the expression of God. It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do in my life. But all the love has paid off. Now I am living a great fun-filled life and have this girl back as one of my friends. Even though gossip hurts, I've learned through this experience that all you need to do to turn things around is to love.