Dear Ones –

The biggest incentive I have for learning how to let go of my bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness, regret, anger, and blame is when I see the faces of other people who have held onto those dark impulses for their whole lives.

Close your eyes for a moment and picture the most bitter person you've ever known.

See what I mean?

Does that person not look like he/she is being dragged through hell — and maybe is dragging everyone else down to hell with him/her?

Is that really the way you want to go?

This is what I ask myself, when I find myself making justifications and exceptions for my own anger (like: "I know, I know, we are supposed to be forgiving and gracious of everyone, but I got REALLY screwed by that guy!"). As though my bitterness is something special, something worth protecting and defending. As though people of grace have not also been screwed over (way worse than me) and yet somehow they rise above it.

Now take a moment and close your eyes and picture the most forgiving and compassionate person you've ever met.

Isn't that the face you want to have someday?

That light? That peace?

That's certainly the face I want.

But I know that you don't just get that face for free. You must work for it, like a miner buried under a collapsed roof.

Do the work. Do whatever you have to do to get there — therapy, prayer, contemplation, ceremony, atonement, study. Start digging toward the light.

Don't allow yourself be dragged to hell while you're still alive.

Let it go,

via Elizabeth Gilbert’s Facebook Wall