The following is an excerpt from “A Prelude to Forgiveness” written by Mark Chappelle with personal reflections written by yours truly. To read the full article and other original works by Mark Chappelle, be sure to visit JUNKYARDSALVATION.COM. Thank you and enjoy!
I’ve thought about it often. The scenario loops in mind. It starts a few moments before my heart got broken, but plays out differently this time. Originally, I didn’t know what hit me, but this time I’m ready. My senses are keen. I discern when I’m being patronized, snowed. I know the true words from the constructed pictures. I know the sincere smiles from those stiffly pasted on top to keep me dawdling unawares. This time I’m nimble for the moment when I should parry. This time I’m just out of their weapon’s reach. Prescient of my opponent’s next move, I counterstrike and draw both blood and surprise. I pause and turn up a corner of my mouth taking in the surveyed victory.
Had my reality played this way, I wouldn’t have lost my power. So much might not have fallen out of balance. I would not have become a victim and someone’s casualty. As I step away from my imagination, I notice in running this scenario that my muscles have tensed, shoulders tight having not yet left the fantasy. My brows have furrowed and jaws clenched without prompting. The conflict has become so real during this mental exercise, that if the assailant were to appear before me physically, I could easily burst into a commotion of bared teeth and hurled furniture, expletives zipping through the air like throwing knives. It ain’t all good.
There’s just a moment to break myself out before the scene replays again from the beginning, folding another layer over on an already rugged anger. My conjured emotions have producedan ire that is very present and sizzling hot to the touch. The way I’ve rehearsed this vindication so well for so long, I become more and more confident in my ability to perform it. That scares me. That’s not the performance I wanted to perfect. I was supposed to forgive.
MY FAVORITE GEMS:
When you are wronged, you are due a reparation or an apology at the very least. These are things of value that you are rightfully owed. However, if it’s a truce you seek, it may be a good gambit to forfeit what you’re due. Don’t insist it be paid. Write it off as bad debt. Rather than considering it a loss, consider it an investment into the possibility of a future peace.
Grudges don’t hold themselves. You have to babysit them. They’re high maintenance. If you decide you never want to see someone’s face again, you have to constantly forecast to make sure you never encounter each other at public events. You have to regularly police your relationships for crossed alliances that may bring them into your path. This never lets up, never lets you rest.