Tunnels: Savoring the Bitterness without Turning Bitter

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“Some tend to forget, some tend to dwell. Me? I will do neither”

-from the short film “The Places We Should Have Gone” by Wong Fu Productions

 

I have been praying, for the last several months, that God take away the pain. It is so inconvenient, and I am afraid that it might turn me into a selfish, bitter, (word that rhymes with witch). If I have any fear, it is that this experience will turn me into a nasty waif.

I have prayed so hard for God to take away the pain, to not make my heart involuntarily twitch every time I see, or hear, or remember about the Painful, Awful Happening, if only for the reasons that I want to do my job more effectively, and be able to rejoice with my friends.

I have prayed for this Tunnel to end.

But the Tunnel is still long, and the darkness is still thick. At times I think I see a pinprick of light in the distance… then I wonder if it is nothing but a trick my mind plays on me.

Four months since the Painful, Awful Happening, and only now am I beginning to understand and accept that this pain is here to stay, like an unpleasant cloak I must wear, like some terrible-tasting medicine I must take — to make me better, to hone my character, to remind me to keep trusting Him.

Now that I’ve accepted this, my prayers now have changed from “Lord, take this away” to “Lord, help me still love with this” and “Lord, let me not be bitter”.

I doubt if anyone starts out dreaming of becoming Ebenezer Scrooge. Scrooge never dreamt of being the old, mean, thing that he was.

It is in the tiny decisions you make along this dark, painful journey that’ll turn you into one though. And it will require tough concentration and consciousness to NOT give in to the temptation of becoming bitter.

Still, His grace is sufficient.

 

 

Read the first post in this series:

Introduction: Tunnels: Journeying in the Dark

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