The nucleus is forgiveness. Do we give it to those who have truly harmed us in our walk through life? Letting something go is one of the hardest things in human nature. Bitterness is like a small tumor that grows larger over time, consuming out thoughts, causing even physical damage to our own bodies for holding it in. We have a grip on hurt like grim death and wish that the person will one day see the pain caused or, better yet, come begging our forgiveness. It doesn’t happen, and over time we sink deeper. How freeing is being forgiven or giving someone forgiveness?
After a ridiculous Hero WOD at CrossFit, my wife and I crashed into bed and flipped on the television with nothing to watch in particular. Netflix is the next option. Scrolling through the movies, I came across my favorite actor of all time, Robert Duvall. In 2009 he starred in a movie entitled Get Low. I have no idea how I missed this movie. The cast list is exceptional, and the movie should have passed across the lips and ears of the Academy. It is possible that I was too busy riding my bike. The movie follows the true story of a man named Felix Bushaloo Breazeale, a hermit in the 1930s who lived in the mountains of Tennessee, holding onto emotional pain for over 40 years.
I am not a movie reviewer, not do I pretend to be one, but this movie settled into me like a heavy fog. I too have held tightly to wounds that I would not allow to heal. I would pick at them if they began to scab over. I guess I was reminding myself of the pain, so that I could continue to feel the anger for other people since it appeared that they did not care. Felix Breazeale sentenced himself to 40 years for what he thought was the pain he caused others, while others in the near town thought him to be a crazy loon, incapable of feeling bad for anything. Many in the town weren’t even old enough to remember what had happened. Felix “Bush” Breazeale did . . . and could not release it, until he had a dream. No spoiler alert, but the crux of the movie centers on a man wanting to attend his own funeral. Everything else will have to be understood by watching the movie.
I am still learning, at 45 years old, not to allow bitterness to creep in. Roooooooll with it, man. Life is too short to live in misery over someone else’s stupidity. Cycling has allowed me to time to think on long rides and notice the beauty of life. I am blessed beyond what I deserve. God has been abundant in my life, and I have no reason to whine. So what if someone does something to me? That is his problem, not mine. When I get low one day, I want my legacy to be of love and happiness. People will be people. I can’t control everything. I have the best family on earth who loves me dearly, so what more could I need or want?