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Thursday, March 14, 2013

My Story - Letting go

See previous posts on this subject HERE.

A woman in church asked a question with tears in her eyes and an obvious lump in her throat. She wanted to know how God could love people who do bad things.

I suspect she is dealing with a person in her life who is causing her grief, and she cannot understand how to let go at this point. She cannot understand how God's love can extend to someone who seems to willfully brings pain upon others.

Until my dad burned my house down, I honestly didn't realize how different our family was from others. There is still so much I'm trying to understand why simultaneously trying to let it go. I don't doubt that God still loves my dad despite the life he's chosen to live. What helps is facing the fact that he is a sociopath. Not that every person who makes bad choices should get a "free pass" in the form of a mental illness, but in this case I think it's pretty legit.

I feel like I'm getting sidetracked. But allow me to explain.

Understanding why my dad is the way he is helps me not take everything personally. He wasn't necessarily doing bad things to purposefully hurt me. When one has no moral compass, one tends to behave badly towards others without realizing it. I suspect my dad rarely thought of the effects of his actions, and instead was only thinking of himself.

With that in mind, I've let go of a lot of anger. Yes, it took time. Yes, it was hard. What I wish I'd had time to share with that woman in our Relief Society meeting was that sometimes the path to healing is the path that removes those people from our lives.

Maybe it isn't possible to carve out the people who hurt us. Maybe we have to see them every day. In a way, I'm lucky my dad went to prison and from then was no longer allowed to be in my life. I honestly did just use the word "lucky" to describe my circumstances. It shows I've come a long way.

With all that thrown out there, I just hope it can help someone, somewhere, understand that there is a future beyond all that hurt. It is possible to let go. And while I may never want a relationship with my dad, and I may not technically love him, I believe that God does. And I'm okay with that.

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