I hope you're having a wonderful week so far. Fall is upon us and for many reasons it's a special time of year. While out on a run one evening this week enjoying the cool, fresh air and vibrant colors, I had an interesting concept enter my head that kept my mind off my aching muscles and throbbing lungs. My obsession wasn't intentional, it just sucked me in. Something that has been right under your nose for your entire life and you just now realize it's impact is enlightening but also confusing as you wonder how you missed something so obvious for so long. And maybe what else I'm not seeing that is in plain sight. Like many things in life, all you need is within reach, we merely need a new perspective to see it. It has nothing to do with food or ranching but it has everything to do with health.
As my runs often do, my mind was clearing as I left the pettier aspects of life in the proverbial dust behind me. As I gained distance, I gained clarity. My thoughts had trailed into the realm of forgiveness and how life-giving and essential it is yet how the paths on either side of the forgiveness coin are distinctly different, yet uniquely challenging. To offer forgiveness is hard, to accept forgiveness is something I'm realizing has the potential to be much more difficult, often requiring nothing less than pure humility. Extending forgiveness is hard, really hard. But it can still easily harbor a stitch of pride in our hearts in seeing ourselves as the victim who overcome this unjust act against us, big or small. My heart always bled for the victim, and rightly so. Innocence is a sacred thing and taking that from someone is an atrocity that should be mourned. This perspective of the transgressor being the real victim really slapped me in the face though. I've always been aware that the perpetrator needs love and how they're in such pain they can't see past their own hurt. That's a sad, lonely place to be. But I've never pondered the thought of how we accepter of forgiveness requires the most humility. Accepting forgiveness requires faith because we often can't even forgive ourselves, never mind see how someone else could extend us true forgiveness for what we've done. It requires an "If you say so" level of faith.
"If you say so, I can try to see me through your eyes."
"If you say so, I can maybe lift myself from the deep, dark, pit of despair, on the shoulders of your forgiveness, to begin to see myself as someone other than what I did."
"If you say so, maybe I can begin anew with the gift undeserved life you have given me."
"If you say so, could it be possible to be 'seen' again? To put the event in the past and end the suffering?"
We all have narratives in the deepest, darkest closets of our minds of things we can't forgive ourselves for and, sometimes, it's merely our own pride that is standing in the way of freedom. Freedom that impacts your energy to those around you that need you. The world needs you. What you've done does not define who you are. Lay down your pride and find forgiveness for yourself, possibly in someone else's eyes.