Saturday, June 1, 2013

Forgiveness...

There was a time when I hated my father.  That was before I realized how much we had in common.  There was a time when I hated the man who took away my dignity...until I realized if that's the way he treats people it must really stink to be like that , and his karma must really stink.  Things could be worse...I could be that slimy. All of a sudden I forgave him.  Did I forget? No.  I just didn't let the memory of a person who was such a low life control me any more.  That's how I got even, by taking my own life back. When I think of him, I think nothing, except maybe pity.

Pity is a good way of getting even. It's also a good way of healing your heart. Think of how damaged people must be to be so mean. 

Forgive everybody everything.  This movie is Tuesdays with Morrie.  I had read the book.  The movie is even better.  I watched the whole thing. 

Forgive everybody everything.



Okay, on another forgiveness note...who knows what it feels like to be forgiven? Raise your hands...put 'em in the air like you just don't care.  Isn't that the most amazing feeling?  Isn't kindness the most beautiful gift?

I killed my garden, my husbands fruit trees, his beloved rose-garden, the neighbors cacti....by accidentally spraying them with roundup, which I mistook for insecticide.  I didn't realize it for a day.  When I finally did, I wanted to die...I told my son.
"It could have been worse, ma.  We could have been subsistence farmers..."
"Don't beat yourself up, you made a mistake.  Anybody could have done it."

Sweety, the subsistence farmer thing kinda made me giggle past the pain, just a tiny bit.

"Honey, we have so much to be thankful for.  In the scheme of things, it really doesn't mean much."

Although he and my son joked, I found out later, that the only thing left was the stone fence. I hadn't figured out a way to ruin that...

In talking over their forgiveness and how much it meant to me...I realized something.  People can't forgive unless they have been forgiven.  I'm not talking about religion.  I'm talking flesh and blood forgiveness.

I must have done something right, for them to be so kind.  My husband brought up that I had forgiven him.  I remembered my parents forgiving me for backing the car out of the driveway and wrecking both cars. I come from a long line of forgiveness. To see it in my son, made me realize how very important it was that he knew forgiveness.  I can't stress this enough...I finally felt a little worthy as a parent, that I had done ~something~ right.  I think, it is the greatest gift of all.  And it is a gift. We must choose to give it.

We grew up in Lilly white Nebraska.  We live near Atlanta now, which, one of Tyler Perry's characters said was "Like Africa, only more black people."  Sure, there are bitter, blaming people.  It's not been that long ago that Jim Crow lived here, and he still does in pockets.  But if you want to meet someone who has the light heart of forgiveness...meet the common black man.  Forgiveness is a choice.  It is also a soul restorer.  Unforgiveness hurts the vessel that holds it.  It eats the heart like an acid.

Let it all go.  Forgive everybody everything.  Your heart will thank you. And I promise you, it will return to you.




2 comments:

Happy Elf Mom said...

True forgiveness is one of those things that when you are on the receiving end of it, it is almost as hard as the giving end. I know Jesus said it is more blessed to give than to receive but sometimes receiving is ok too, and we need to do that nicely just as we give nicely.

usethebrains godgiveyou said...

You don't hear much discussion about forgiveness outside of religion. Occasionally, you will see a murderer on t.v. who is forgiven by the family. They are always people of faith. When we get it right, I guess we get it right. Often it seems that it's all about getting yours and fighting for your rights, and getting even.

Then again, I think Jesus probably had had enough of religion in his time. It seems kind of apparent...

You are always kind, Happy. If there is a point when we move beyond the trappings of religion, I think you are there.