A fresh and different coaching experience.

For the last few weeks I had the priceless privilege of being present with my dearest friend as she cared for her brother in his final days of battling cancer, then celebrating his young life, and now grieving his absence and her loss.  The time spent in his small Hospice room was a holy and powerful gift.  My friend loved her brother through the very last moment and beyond; tenderly caring for his weary body and soul, easily forgetting and forgiving any trespasses or  debts that may have occurred in healthier days. And though the ravages of disease were costly to his physical presence, there was the unmistable beauty of surpassing peace on his face that I believe resulted from her selfless, unconditional, forever love.

All was forgiven.  Only love remained.

Wednesday is the annual invitation to the lovely, remarkable season of Lent.  The loveliest of invitations for any of us to unload, detox, and relinquish any joy stealers, peace disturbers, and love haters in confident anticipation of finding forgiveness, grace, redemption, do-overs, love.

A few weeks ago in my first returning post I wrote, “This Quest (for soul freedom) is a Hobbit sized one…so the first gremlins and goblins you meet will force you to face the one fierce barrier to freedom – unforgiveness.”

Helps to start with yourself…..might as well start now.

Sometimes it helps to begin by listing the wrongs you have done to yourself.   Pay attention to your body’s responses.  Brains lie.  Bodies don’t.

Put words to the mean girl/ bully boy who taunts and threatens your heart and mind.  Tell yourself your darkest secrets.  Yell, scream, raise your fists.

Then stop.

Be very still.

Look in the mirror  and allow forgiveness to swarm your bullied heart and soul…

and apologize to yourself.

Ask for forgiveness for being such a mean bully to one so undeserving.

Whatever shortcoming you believe you have, whatever failure you have allowed to follow you wherever you go, whatever potential you believe you wasted….

lean into your good self….and apologize.

You survived.

You have done what you have done.  At any given moment, you did all that occured to you to do.  You spoke. You acted.  You did all that you knew to do at that moment.

And whatever happened…well, it really happened.

And if there is massive fall out or if you have pounds to lose and addictions to conquer or debts to pay and relationships to mend THEN you need all of your wonderful self to be present and accounted for in order to meet such a quest.

So, with utter kindness and profound respect for yourself….leanintoyourheart…and forgive yourself for whatever offense you believe  you will never  deserve to be forgiven for.

Forgive. Relinquish all bitterness.  Relinquish all shame.

You survived. You showed up.  You kept going.

You were created for love.  To forgive extravangantly.

Despite the fact that there may be people who have deeply wronged you and yes, forgiving them will be a massive mountain along your quest…despite that fact….we are hardest on ourselves even when we are the ones who have been wronged.

So, long before you can genuinely, deeply, completely forgive another human being….you must begin with yourself.

Forgive yourself for not being more…better….smarter…thinner…richer….forgive yourself for believing out of pain and fear that you deserved what you got; forgive yourself for staying too long or for leaving too soon.

Forgive yourself for saying yes when you meant to say no and saying no when you meant to say yes.

You lived.  You showed up. You kept going.  You never quit.

No more grudges. No more hateful resentments. No more private punishments.

Open you hands.  Free your beautiful heart.



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