Sunday, November 15, 2009

one more thought about the plane conversation

... I was drying my hair this morning thinking about our tribe. It seems to me that we are not a better family than many. In fact, we are FULL of personality which makes us full of possible offenses. I think what makes the difference for us is the strong desire to forgive.

I know that I have the capacity to offend my kids more than twice in three weeks. I know I have disappointed them... often as not without even knowing it - we can do that to each other.

But they have not cut me out. They have not said things that make a relationship dangerous to continue. They have not threatened me.

One of the marks of our family is kindness. We tend toward kindness. And we forgive forgive forgive. Forgiveness is the only way to sustain kindness.

I am so glad to be in a tribe that doesn't keep record of wrongs. The air between us is clear. Because we forgive.

CSLewis - one of my mentors - says that we have to begin our days forgiving each other even before we get up out of bed. The other person, simply by being 'other' will offend us. The way forward is to forgive them unilaterally, simply forgive them for being who they are,for not being 'me'. (Sort of reveals our own selfish perspective doesn't it?) To do this is to create a state of mind, to establish a foundation of relationship, acknowledging before hand that my own pleasures and rights will make who you are something of an offense, at some point. So before that happens I let it go. Then when we collide I can laugh instead of fume.

I have another idea to write about but I had to say this first. Happy Sabbath.


Krissi said...

I hope I can have a family like that when I have kids someday.

Lee Ann said...

This is a topic that has beeen on my mind a lot lately. The series on Joseph has confirmed what I already knew about myself--that it is often hardest to be our best selves with those closest to us and whom we love the most. I was reading recently about being yourself and how if someoone doesn't like the way you are they should go be with someone else. I had a cha-ching moment. That meant that I needed to do the same for others. If I was going to be with someone I needed to accept them just as they were. I realized that it was someone's difference from me that wounded me, because they didn't say or do what I would have done, what I wanted them to do, I found them failing. They could do a 100 things but it didn't count because it wasn't the 1 thing I wanted. I was hurt by their difference, which really had nothing to do with me, it was just who they were. I decided to no longer resent what the people in my life were not, but only to be grateful for what they were. Without saying anything to anyone about my new revelation, the most difficult people in my life suddenly became much easier. I no longer needed to forgive them because I wasn't finding them guilty of not being me.