This goes out to those I have forsaken, to those who I have misled, to those for whom because of me have not seen or heard or experienced The Creator, The Redeemer.

I write this with my face on the ground.  Ashes on my head. I have shredded my finely pressed suit. My heart in my hands.  Vulnerable and pleading, I ask to be forgiven.  Forgiven by you.  I have been equipped, but not willing.  I have been given the means, but I have let it die as it is clinched in my fist.  I have seen, but chosen to forget.  I have been entrusted, but failed for fear.  I have experienced grace, but have given condemnation.  I have been freed, but I have shackled.  Because of me you have not experienced the One who sets captives free.

This goes out to those I have forsaken, the orphan, the widow, the refugee, the leper.  I have left you alone, starving, cold, and without family.  Because of me you have not experienced life.  You have no family.  You have been the outcast, the forgotten, the fleeting image on a screen as the channels are surfed.  The inconvenience.

I write this because I have waited for another to take my place.  I have cast the first stone, when I should be standing accused.  I have not made your reality my burden.  I have celebrated luxury I have believed I deserve, and do not understand what it means to be without.  I determine the amount I offer by careful calculation, never having grasped the concept of first fruits. I give enough to pat myself on the back, to feel like I have done my part. I have met the requirement. I have given so little that I would not have even missed it.  Because of me, you want nothing to do with The Provider, with The Hope.

This goes out to the broken hearted, the one who cannot access clean water, to the homeless, to the addicted, to the widow, the unwed mother, the bastard child, to the victim I have not defended, to the oppressed I have not placed above myself.

I write this because you are my brother, you are my sister, but I have not ran to you in your time of need.  I have chosen my pride.  I have worshipped the golden calf of comfort.  I have let my lack of faith and belief in my own inadequacy keep me from practicing true religion.  Because of me, you don’t want anything to do with The Savior.

This goes out to my neighbor with AIDS.  To the mother of an aborted child.  I should have embraced you, listened to you, walked with you, grieved with you.  Instead, I scoffed at you.  I rained damnation on your head.  I have hated you.  I look the other way as we pass.  Would never want our eyes to meet.  To the child from the other side of the tracks, to the gay man, to the incarcerated, to the divorced, to the family that visibly doesn’t have it together.  I have forsaken you.  I have given you no other choice but to believe that I think that this world would be a better place without you.  Because of me, you have not experienced being loved for who you are.  Or that you are worth being loved.  That you are loved.

I write this because I see.  I see my faults.  I see my white washed tomb.  I see my insecurity.  I see putrid disdain that surrounds for what should be seen as beautiful, what should be seen as life, as freedom, but through me you see nothing that is pure, nothing that is holy, nothing that is real, nothing worth hoping for, nothing worth having faith in, nothing that is different than the rest of humanity who is just doing what they need to for themselves.  You have not seen, The Forgiver.  The One for whom I can only hope forgives me.

I write this from a heart that does not believe that it is the answer, but has seen the Answer.  I write this not out of believing I am the solution, but that I have experienced the Solution, redemption.  I write this from a heart that has experienced having no hope, from a heart that has hated it’s own body.  From a heart that has tried to control and limit and has misunderstood the grace and mercy that itself has undeservedly been granted.  I write this, asking for a second chance, and maybe we can both be part of this world’s wholing.  I need you more than you need me…..Please forgive me.


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