Updated: Sep 10
I’ve been incredibly angry lately. Scream out loud and pound something angry. Despite my best efforts, I could not seem to work through my feelings. They just seemed to grow and grow. Did you know that anger is a secondary emotion? Underneath anger there exists hurt, fear, or both. It’s safe to say that a lot of us have been living in fear recently. This virus has turned our world upside down. It’s made us afraid to even be near each other. A lot of us feel hurt right now. We feel hurt because we don’t feel heard. There is a lot of shouting going on and not enough listening. We all long to get back to normal. But what if there is something better for us after this tragedy? What if this time in isolation gives us insight into how messed up our normal was? I realized yesterday that normal for me has been holding on to anger, guilt, and shame. Normal meant being afraid and anxious all the time. My normal included holding on to hurt and offense, because “They hurt me and I have a right to be upset.”. Yes, I do have a right to have my feelings and work through them. I even have a right to hold on to them forever. But who am I truly hurting? Oh my. That realization made me so sad. Anger makes us feel empowered and motivated. But those feelings are false. The truth is, anger keeps us trapped in resentment, and pain. Anger keeps us from grief. And, as much as it sucks, grief is necessary for healing. I’m ready to release hurt and embrace grief so that I can move forward. I’m not sure what working through grief is going to look like yet. I need to grieve situations where people have hurt and failed me. I need to grieve people’s inability to meet my needs. And I need to finish grieving some losses. I heard a great message last night called “Emptying out the Negative”. It was about how holding on to negative emotions takes up space in our soul. It prevents us from receiving creativity, love, and joy. That hit me in a way that I never got before. Sometimes you understand a concept in your head, but it doesn’t take root in your heart. Well, last night it did. I don’t want to be angry anymore. I’m ready to release that control. I’m ready to release hurt and fear. It doesn’t matter that “they deserve it”. I don’t want one more minute of emotional or physical pain caused by holding on to the negative. I’m ready to make space for the positive. So if you have ever hurt me, I forgive you. I have so much more peace today. I don’t have to hold someone responsible anymore. That’s not my job. God is my vindicator, and He will make all things right. All I have to do is accept His peace and grace. It’s all I ever had to do.