At Bridgeport UCC, Susan Leo wrote a beautiful affirmation that I didn’t even realize I BREATHED until today. Both in and out. In long, gulping breaths of fresh air exhaling fear, regret, shame. Without even knowing it, she tattooed my palm.
When Susan asked me to start preaching at Bridgeport, I walked around for five weeks with R,M written on my palm in Sharpie. Every time I looked down, I said the words again, because I had to get them right in front of the congregation.
We are God’s children, wonderfully made…
And as fallible as we are, we are no mistake.
Be RESPONSIBLE, but let go of guilt.
Be MINDFUL, but carry no shame.
Believe the Good News of the Gospel.
You are loved unconditionally by God.
Yesterday I had a moment of realization. I was so wrapped up in my own head and my own pain that it was stopping me from seeing other people. I do not have any resolution for this, because while I recognize the obstacle, I am not healthy enough to move it all at once.
So I trip. Hard. Fall on my face because I’m not putting my hands out for shield. There were areas of my life begging for my responsibility with their hearts and I could not see it for the log was in my own eye. Everything is breaking apart. Simply everything. I have to hope, though, that the divine will win. That feelings of goodness and light will eventually overtake the darkness I’ve put into the world just by existing. It is the meaning of God. It is the meaning of faith. Atheists get all tied up about the Grandfather in the Sky That Watches Every Move, but they fail to see that religion ALSO provides a place to go when you’re inflicting damage on other people and you’re trying your best to STOP PERPETUATING THE CYCLE.
Diane’s actions rewired my ability to function. It is my responsibility to undo it. Faith is a way for me to let God have it so my friends and family don’t have to. I lost that place in me, like we all do, and showed my basest self to someone I love in the sacred circle of inner companions that you collect over a lifetime. As it turns out, we were soulmates in the Elizabeth Gilbert definition… someone that shakes you into reality but was never designed to be permanent.
My responsibility is to stop the “clicking off safe” from happening again, whether it is in this relationship or not. My mindfulness is that in the moment, hatred won. It is a terrible mistake that will take time to let go. I have been destroyed at my own hand, because sometimes feelings of regret just aren’t enough.
And sometimes, resurrection happens in the middle of the mess. I don’t hope for much, but I for damn sure hope for that.