3 April 2014
Letting Go - Part Three
In the first two parts of what has turned out to be a series of blog entries on forgiveness, and whilst studying how to let go of things in the past, I have arrived at the inevitable conclusion that I had been hurt much harder by some past experiences than even I had imagined. In fact, there are a couple of hurts that are only now coming to light, hiding beneath what was an obvious injury. It's like I had only dealt with the flesh wound, without realising that there was a broken bone just below...
In this 21st Century world of ours, society expects us to put on a brave face to pretty much everybody. If you show any sign of weakness, you are assured of being a 'wuss', or at best of 'having your heart on your sleeve'. Somebody told me (coincidentally, the same one who said recently that I was 'too nice') that I was 'too easy a target'. Maybe so, kind sir - but did you have to take the shot?
So I have been taking a more realistic look at my 'hurt'. And how I seem to come over to others. Am I trying to maintain a 'poor me' image? I really don't think so. If anything, the opposite. I think I've been trying to convince people that I am strong during times when I was far from it... in essence, faking it until I felt better.
For instance, I used to have a problem with answering questions like "How are you today?" on a day when things haven't gone so well. I didn't want to lie and say "fine" ... and if I told the truth and said something I could be accused of fishing for sympathy... which is not what I am looking for. Sure, maybe the person asking doesn’t really care how you are. But he or she did ask, so I need to respond...
You see, "fine" is simply mundane. And possibly a lie... Unless, as one website said, it's an acronym for "Feelings I’m Not Expressing". I'm working on some better responses now; don't find this easy (it's too much like 'small talk', ugh!) but it's a work in progress.
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These times of reflection over this Lent period has done much to underline the terrific promise that, when I can eventually let go of these hurts, I can then take hold of something far, far better. Including God's unconditional, overflowing love for each and every one of us.
And here's another little problem; I know in my head that I am loved. However, sometimes I have trouble feeling this in my heart. Especially on those dark days when I can't keep but dwelling on that one negative remark that someone has made, simply ignoring all of the good things that have happened that same day... Why do I have trouble feeling this?
The Lent course that we have been studying at our Corps reminded me that we all have bad days as well as good. There needs to be difficult times. It's all part of life. Throughout His period on this Earth Jesus taught us all that pain, suffering and death precede resurrection and freedom from pain. He was mocked, scourged, and spat upon. And it wasn't His fault.
So, it's really OK to feel angry when you get emotionally hurt - in the same way that you feel pain from a physical hurt. However, it's not good if you continue to live in that moment of pain - never moving beyond that feeling, never healing and recovering from the 'hurt'. Numb to anything else...
There's so much to this topic - so there's more to come!!!