Updated: Oct 26, 2019
Scrolling through Instagram illuminates how close I am to the life I don't want. But that is easier to think when I don't feel alone.
Singleness does that to people. It frees you up to think about things that, if not done in the proper context, can be quite debilitating. But it also provides ample opportunity to pry open years of corked bottles only to taste the sour vinegar that has fermented into a pungent odor that the soul cannot bear to process.
Bitterness is the sharpened knife that slowly glides over the wrist. It cuts both horizontal and vertical, wanting attention but killing ourselves in the process. Unfortunately, I harbor the most resentment toward those that undocked their boat from the shore of our union a long time ago. Now I am too proud to admit that I am too broken to process what remains.
When you crash your car, you are far more careful driving down the same road. The only problem is when you hit your car too many times, you begin to hallucinate obstacles that don't exist. You swerve and hope to avoid wrecking only to cause more damage than you did before.
Listening to a sermon on forgiveness, the pastor asked how long will I hold resentment toward those around me? Yet the man in the mirror is who I resent the most. The hardest hang up in forgiveness is forgiving ourselves. Unidentifed emotions are buried below mountains of insecurity and only rear their head when we feel least prepared to deal with our problems.
An airline wouldn't let me get my ticket because I wanted to check bags that weren't mine to check. The ones that were mine weighed way too much. I honestly didn't notice. I had been carrying them forever and ignored how much baggage I dragged along with me. But now that I want to get on the plane, that I want to go forward, I am unable to do so. The overwhelming accumulation of junk that I hoard as a badge of morality keeps me from progressing toward righteousness. How can I rise above when I am unwilling to leave behind?
I have many suitcases full of things that do little to make me a genuine person. I feel closer to God when I have nothing. So why do I hold onto the things that prevent me from moving?
Why deal with the past when Christ has set us free? Maybe that is what He meant when He told us to sell all our possessions. The things I identify as part of who I am is the reason I am never God's child. I am chained to the dying world, thinking that I am secure in my rocky foundations built on the foolish idea that I will never change. But even my body disagrees with that notion.
For a long time, I wanted the fish, not the worm. I wanted to toss a trap in the water and not cast a line every few hours. I wanted God to forgive me for my sins, but I did not want to live forgiven of my sins.
I didn't end up losing myself in other people. Over time, I simply became what I pursued. Overall, it is humorous to find it absurd to think the concept that God would send us to hell offsets the possibility that He is a loving God when, in His love, He just sends us to the place we have shown Him we want to go.
To forgive does not mean to forget, but to embrace a grace that is far beyond my understanding. In my unrighteousness, it is the least I can offer those less imperfect. But my luggage has no place on the plane I am taking. Waiting at the carousel will only keep me waiting for an old life that will I no longer need.
No human or object can handle the bitterness and wrath I wish to transfer onto another person. Time has shown how brutal it can be for anyone to endure. To seek vengeance only causes pain for me — all the while, causing significant distress to my spiritual health.
To let go and look forward is not a secret way of hoping life will come back. It is welcoming an opportunity that a new life awaits. Letting go in love by knowing something else is waiting is enough to know that the past does not have to last when we are forgiven. And just like the plane I have taken, I know He has risen.