Forgiveness

There is no better future without letting go of the sins of the past
Without being willing to see others not as a summation of debt unpaid
For we all walk around carrying the burdens and baggage of our lives
Fearing that someone might see the scarlet letter we cover with a coat
Or the identity we hide behind the masks we wear for the world to see
Pinned within boxes far too small to fit our frames constricting our freedom
And our shame is a garment that makes it too hard to breathe the thin air of life
For until we learn to forgive and love ourselves we will be enslaved to shame
Unable to feel the love we desire or the compassion we seek
 
Forgiveness is such a simple word to say and a hard life to live
Love would be so easy if only it didn’t involve letting down my walls
And when one has pierced my heart to let them close again
To offer peace to one who acted in war, to offer friendship to an enemy
To love one who I would rather label as unloveable, unforgiveable
And yet rather than picking up the blade that pierced my heart
Turning once again to use it on its previous wielder,
To demand an eye for an eye and a heart for a heart
Perhaps I can learn to see the wounds they already carry
And in my own healing begin to point the way to a new future
Where swords are put aside in favor of the surgeon’s needle
As lives become stitched back together and hearts are make whole again.
Neil White, 2014

The Prodigal Son, Marble Statue by Joseph Mozier (1857)

The Prodigal Son, Marble Statue by Joseph Mozier (1857)

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