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What Did I Expect?

Sometimes ministry feels like one long struggle toward compassion and forgiveness

3. I get hopeless. Viable, but no use to anyone, especially me.

4. I get over it and get on with it. What? Pretend? Ignore it? Bury it? Pah. Schoolgirl error. What's buried alive just crops up somewhere else. Different place, same ugly plant.

So where am I? Out of all options other than real forgiveness? Step 1: Surrender. With the sure and certain knowledge that there's not a hope in a very hot place that I can do this on my own.

I'm remembering a wise man who told me that to get to forgiveness from anger, I needed to travel through compassion. (I'm scrunching my face 'cause that's so not where I want to go.) Compassion. Come on, Debra. Look. Really look. Get to grips with her stuff. All the relentless daily knocks, the relational poverty, the percussion of grief that's shaped her life and belief. Watch. Closely. Beneath the armor. Focus. Now...allow a living sadness for her to awaken.

I think you'd better leave me here. Sometimes it takes a while. But when I finally look over the ramparts I've built, and adjust my eyes to her reality, forgiveness might just become a possibility.

When I get there (eventually), I'll discover that the way I'll look at her is just the way my Jesus looks at me.

Debra L Greyton writes to remain sane and remind herself of the bright and good . A pastor by calling, a wife by choice, a mother by the good hand of God, and the wife of a faithful pastor of God's peculiar people. "Real" and "Actual" are her watchwords. No capes allowed.

June30, 2014 at 8:00 AM

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