Friday, November 15, 2013

The Unlovely Around My Heart

Photo taken by grietgriet
“Be angry, but don't sin - don't let the sun go down before you have dealt with the cause of your anger; otherwise you leave room for the Adversary.” Ephesians 4:26-27

I thought I was over it. But my brain has a mind of its own and every holiday season I am reminded of what is missing.

I want to be done.

More tears have been spent on making myself be peace about the circumstances. I have forgiven those who misrepresented me. In my own strength extended grace to those who choose to believe gossip. I understand that who I am will never be accepted. I don’t hold it against them. They have their own pain to deal with. I cannot judge them because I did have a part to play.

I have owned my part. Offered amends for my shortcomings and accepted that the damage is irreversible. No longer do I feel the need to be understood or validated. I only wish them well on their life journey.

Yet…something irritates.

I re-examine Forgiveness: analyze it from their point of view. Where were my expectations unrealistic? What life experience motivated the choices they made. I feel empathy. I understand. I check to see if I hold any expectations of justice or reconciliation with them. I almost feel peace.
Photo taken by bekahboo42

Then… something burns under the surface of my soul.

Anger is checked and I filter through all its definitions:

Anger is a secondary emotion, find out the primary source and resolve it. Then anger will diffuse-check. Did that.

Anger is a messenger. Ask her what the question is, answer it and then anger will be satisfied- check. Did that.

Then GirlyK and I were watching Bones. Sweets interrogating someone said, “Anger is triggered by unmet expectations.”

A glowing hot spear stabs my heart. I missed my own feelings. I never allowed myself to simply feel. Every examination has focused on them. Empathy, sympathy, forgiveness and grace extended to them, but never for myself.
Photo taken by Agarianna

My brain recoils: that’s selfish. That’s not Christlike. Indulging my sin nature gives room to all kinds of evil. I am not supposed to think about me in this situation for it to be resolved. They were the ones wronged. Not me…

But I must. I must filter through it all again this time granting permission to feel. The tools of recovery have taught me only through truth in love can real healing occur.

I awaken at 3:00 with the realization of this unlovely truth: I feel resentful. As I try to fall back asleep, Holy Spirit gently unravels the thick black wire shield which encases my beautiful pink heart. Looking closer I see barbs which point outward, intending to protect my heart from harm. The Still Small Voice calls them resentment. On the inside of the wire are smaller, sharper spines. Still Small Voice calls them bitterness.

In the hands of Divine Love I understand that while I protected myself with frustrated resentment, each time my heart encountered those people, the shield pressed into my heart. Those little spines of bitterness added pain which triggered a landslide of anxiety. Longing for freedom I submit to the Healer. As I release my own feelings, a healthy prettypicket fence will surround my heart. With healthy boundaries I will have clarity.  True grace will I finally be able to extend

And the best gift of all: Shalom.

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