Friday, September 28, 2012

Words, Words, Words about Anger and Grief and Forgiveness

Please scroll down for today's first post.

I had wanted to post something cheerful today, seeing as I've been sick for a month now and need to cheer myself up, especially since George is showing signs of the same sickness. But then three things happened this morning that I couldn't ignore, things that came together in my head so perfectly I had--just had-- to pass them on.

If they speak to you, please let me know. I always wonder if these things are coincidences or divine prompting. I'm not eaten by anger and grief myself at this time, but I know what it feels like. Oh, yes, I do.

First, an email from my aunt. She's contemplating the subject of forgiveness and quoted the following lyrics from Don Henley's "The Heart of the Matter":

"I've been trying to get down to the heart of the matter
Because the flesh will get weak
And the ashes will scatter
So I'm thinkin' about forgiveness

Second, a StoryCorps piece by Charlie Morris I heard on NPR's Morning Edition. Please listen to Charlie tell the story. His voice is amazing, and his story is powerful. If Charlie can forgive, can't we all?

Third, the following picture posted by Active Happiness on Facebook this morning:

See what I mean? Three things so closely linked and yet so disparate as 21st century song lyrics, a 20th century hate crime, and an ancient Roman writer dovetailed perfectly on a drippy Friday morning.

I had to share because the coincidence has to mean something to someone. Grief and anger can be normal and healthy, unavoidable parts of life. But when we hold onto them, nurse them, feed them, refuse to forgive and let go, the only people we hurt are ourselves.

The only people we hurt are ourselves.

Do any of these words about forgiveness and grief and anger dovetail with your life? Is there someone you need to forgive? A brother or sister? A parent? A friend? An enemy? A neighbor? God? Is there someone who needs to forgive you?


  1. very well said Susan! This is so true - the suffering is so much more than the act itself.

  2. One of my grandmothers passed away at age 92, but for the last couple years of her life, she was confused and basically living back in the days of her youth. She had been treated not very well by her stepmother when she was a little girl, and she carried that bitterness for 85+ years. Her last years were filled with bitterness and anger--that became her world. That was a powerful lesson to me not to hold on to anger and bitterness. Yes, people do treat us wrong sometimes, but we can choose whether that will affect us temporarily, or whether it will cause us to become bitter people for the rest of our lives.

    My former pastor said, "Unforgiveness is the poison we swallow in hopes that it will kill the other person."

  3. Sharon, I was going to post the exact poison thing!!!! And it really is true because sometimes the other person is not even aware of what they caused you to feel and think!

  4. Love the way "random" things came together for you. Interesting how that happens sometimes. As for unforgiveness, unfortunately, it usually spills (or spews) on those around us.


Thanks so much for taking time to comment!