Everyone deserves a second chance. At least that’s what I’ve always been told.
I’ve messed up. A lot. That being said, I always seem to bounce back. Life is about making mistakes and rebounding from them. It’s not about living that perfect life with no snags in the rope, it’s about untangling the rope and hog-tying life up before the buzzer sounds.
OK, so maybe you don’t have to be in a rush and get your life straightened out before the buzzer sounds. Still, though, there comes a time where you need to get on the right track.
With that frame of mind, I had little to no patience after a very close friend betrayed not only me, but also my family. Well, that is what it felt like at least.
Let me tell you a story.
She was my best friend. She was like a sister to me. Then she disappeared. I last saw her on Dec. 21 of 2006.
That’s why the word “was” is used in both sentences. She’s not here anymore. She is in a place where far too many people go nowadays. She’s in rehab.
She was there for me through the tough times. She was there when I had to deal with making the transition from elementary school to middle school. She was there when my heart was broken – the first time. She was there when Mom was diagnosed with cancer. She was always there. She had a lot to say. With her being 10 years older than me, she had a lot to offer.
Now she’s gone.
For a long time I struggled with her being gone. I felt like she had let me down. Furthermore, though, she had a little girl. She was leaving her daughter behind. This hurt me even more. It so hard seeing a little girl, who doesn’t understand anything, be without her mom.
I struggled with a lot of things. I told myself that if I ever saw her again I was going to give her the biggest tongue-lashing of her life. For at least two years I told myself that I could not forgive her for what she had done. I just wouldn’t accept her behavior.
One day Mom got a letter, though. It was from my long-lost friend. She was now in Memphis, working, but still in rehab. I read the letter, but I was still so bitter about the entire situation. Her daughter was now finishing up kindergarten, and she had not been there for any of it. I just can’t let that happen.
I was helping her daughter with her spelling words one night, and I looked at her. I don’t know if it was the light, if her Mom had been on my mind or if it was something else speaking to me, but I had to leave the room. I lost it. I cried for what seemed like forever. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I finally talked myself into doing something that was totally the opposite of what I had been doing the whole time.
I wrote her a letter.
Somehow, when my pen touched the paper, positive thoughts flowed out of me. I forgave her. I forgave her for running away. I forgave her for giving up. I forgave her for leaving her daughter behind. I forgave her for everything?
What brought this on? I have no explanation. Do I need one though?
A couple weeks later, she wrote back. She was so excited to hear from me. Yeah, I cried again. I’m not ashamed to say it. You would too.
We all make mistakes. I have made plenty. We can’t give up on ourselves though. We also can’t give up on others that make mistakes.
1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
Pray. Confess. Forgiven.
It’s a cycle.
Forgive. Don’t forget.
“I think we all wish we could erase some dark times in our lives. But all of life’s experiences, bad and good, make you who you are. Erasing any of life’s experiences would be a great mistake.” – Luis Miguel
What are some things that you’ve had to bounce back from? What about other people? Have you ever had to just let go of something and move on, even though that was the last thing you wanted to do?