Thursday, April 2, 2009



If I got it right, Rolf Olson, who is a Reverend and whose daughter was murdered answering a Craigslist babysitting ad, says the New Testament redefines forgiveness as "letting go and setting free". It struck me, watching the Olson family on 'The Today Show', talk about the loss of their daughter, sister, Katherine.

Her sister said she went back and forth between anger and pity. The anger was obvious but the pity was for a man who made a bad decision at 18 and now will be 80 years old in prison.

Since I 'touched' the rail regarding politics, may as well take a stab at faith as well. Don't know what you would call my background spiritually, as long as you don't call it 'late for dinner'. But I have always been intersted in those that are able to find serenity and a life through their faith. Watching the Olson family, sharing their process for dealing with the grief and loss, it makes me wonder about those who are able to find misery in otherwise good lives ... and I define 'a good life' as a life not in that class of people that stares directly at the inscription on that gate that says, "...abandon hope ye that enter."

The patriarch Olson's explanitation of forgiveness describes something that I want to think that is in me. That is how that I feel more comfortable with absorbing 'the whatevers' that people have for me. I am already beyond the issue and more than ready to work on the healing between 'us'.

One of the reasons that I tried to 'hate' my ex wife, was so that I wouldn't go back and try again with her. Man, I know how screwed up that I can be, and I never thought that I could honestly say that she was anything that I didn't make her. So to make sure that I stayed away (because I didn't know 'how', not knowing someone you could love could also be toxic) from her, I tried to hate her.


... and you don't need them every day, either. Hate is a short term emotion, and it is beneficial, but only as a sprint. It isn't meant for any great distance, which is why they don't sprint out for marathons. I was carrying that thimbleful of hate in me for her, but then forgot to pour it out when I was clear of her. When I do a 'shoulda, woulda', it is so that I can observe and learn. Again, there is a reason that something is in the past, and that is so it can be a lesson to you. Or at least that is what I think.

I think about what holding on that small amount of hate has done to me, affected my life. Hopefully, I have learned from my experience. I don't go around 'hating', but I have not a problem putting someone in a statis, a limbo. I remember the Church of England (again, see first header) redefining Hell as not a place of eternal fire, but a place of 'nothing'. There was a hue and cry over it, but somehow, I felt that it was appropriate. There is NOTHING like complete negation, of not even being worth of the 'upkeep' of constant fire and excoriating pain ... I think of it as living as you drown.

Do think I needed to 'hate' my wife for a little bit, otherwise, I would have went back to her!! But again, it is a sprint emotion, and if it lasts for more than 800 meters, then you will burn out, or in this case, miss out. Hate, disappointment, bitterness, WILL cause you to miss out. And there isn't any air in that, big boy.


Because if you don't believe in yourself, what are you doing here, period? Life, is always fair. So that you see some miserable, person with all the trappings and trimmings, and you are struggling with the leftovers, doesn't seem right to you ... but then, it isn't in your pay grade to say who gets what and why. Do your thing, and do it the best way that you can.

"That kind of (insert whatever malady, or crap out prediction you see fit) happens to other people, it DOESN'T happen to me!!" I have BELIEVED that since I could tie my freakin' shoes. No matter what, I have always felt that I was 'special' and that great things were mine to have.

I think that for and of anyone. Which brings me back to my choice to 'absorb' what people send at me. Because I know that something special awaits me, in my life, the one I have to use NOW.

You just have to keep the faith, Mark. Keep the faith.


Faith, that is. Is it non-demonminational? This time, it isn't rhetorical, I'd like to know what people think. Sometimes, I wonder what faith is for others, particularly those who can find the misery in the most joyus of events.

I think that is the 'default setting' for me. I mean, it isn't like I don't know that I am going up against it. But if what I want is beyond it, then I have to find a way to get there, don't I? For me, it is far, far worse to sit on the one side of the barrier, with the barrier going untested by me.

Using my 'starter marriage' for example, there were a few flashes of how huge a risk I was taking. But there were also flashes of things like giving a (step) daughter away at her wedding, pictures of me and my to-be wife on the Great Wall. I didn't know then, what I know now.

And what I know now, you see, will be what I use to make the life that is still possible for me, that will leave me fulfilled, and have me take from it a little bit more than my share!

Thanks for reading! NEXT: What makes Sparty special!! The segment on the Olson's took me away from my own dull life for a minute, and I wrote inspired!


Anonymous said...

I can remember hearing the Rolling Stones song "Angie" when I just a kid, and not getting it all. "You love her, but you're leaving her? Aren't you supposed to live happily ever after?"

There's a lot of things that only make sense after you've been alive awhile and lived through some things. "Toxic love" is one of those things a lot of us have had to learn about the hard way.

Moving on… I'm happy to be here. Like everyone, I've lived through some really bad times. But there have been some really good ones, too. I guess I faith that, in the end, on the whole, everything's going to be all right.

Beth said...

It's true what you say about hate. How much more energy does it take to hate than to let it go? Anyone who hangs onto hate usually spends a lot of time and energy sustaining it. I'd rather put my efforts towards something finer.

Hugs, Beth

Her Side said...

::Applause:: Divorce also taught me the work, power, and necessity of forgiveness. What I learned most: I need to give it for my own sanity, and because I need just as much forgiveness as the next person.

To answer your question: Faith is not denominational (from a Christian perspective). In fact, I haven't seen anything kill faith faster than the ridiculous contention between denominations - all while serving the same God.

Protestants have jokes about Baptists. Baptists have jokes about Pentecostals. How confusing for a person who just wants to know who God is.