Hidden Buckets

Imagine how refreshing the air would be
in a community of open, caring honesty,
without that hidden bucket of hurts
fermenting under the kitchen sink.
Steve Garnaas-Holmes

Recently I read these words and saw my hurt fermenting in a particular bucket under a particular sink. That same week, I listened to others who’d been hurt and were gathering the courage to name it and talk about it with their offender. God was clearly prompting me to speak up.

I get butterflies in my stomach just thinking about it. The last thing in the world I want to do is talk about my hurt with the person who hurt me.

If I open the door that hides that bucket, I know I’ll see the hurts I’ve caused in there too. Most likely the one I offended would point them out gently, but too easily I imagine a barrage of rotting garbage being flung at me. Do I really want to open that door?

No, but apparently God does.

I sit with God and try to figure out what I might say. My fight or flight reflex kicks into action. I take some deep breaths till it settles down. I play out different scenarios of how things might go, but this brings me no peace.

Eventually, I hear God simply say, “I’ll be with you.”

Working it out with the person who hurt me will be hard. We’ll both want to run away, get defensive or cry. It may even be uncomfortable for a while. But we’ll survive.

And then, imagine how refreshing the air will be.

If a fellow believer hurts you, go and tell him—work it out between the two of you.
–Matthew 18:15 (MSG)

* * *

Love Mischief for the World

If you are in Greater Vancouver on September 24, you might want to join me in some love mischief and walk for reconciliation in Vancouver. “The Walk for Reconciliation is a positive movement to build better relationships among Indigenous peoples and all Canadians. This bold vision calls on every one of all ages, all backgrounds, all cultures and all faiths to come together as communities and as individuals,” says Reconciliation Canada. “The act of walking and sharing our stories joins us in a commitment to create a new way forward for reconciliation. Join and support the spirit of ‘Namwayut – We are all one.”

What love mischief are you and God doing to care for the world?
Let me know and I will include it in an upcoming post.

Credits and References:
“Compost Bucket” by Deer Park Monastery. Used with permission.
“Name the Hurt,” a poem by Steve Garnaas-Holmes
“Forgiveness” by scem.info. Used with permission.
“Walk Two” from Canada 150+ events.
© Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim, 2017.
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without permission from Esther Hizsa is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided there is a link to the original content and credit is given as follows: © Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim 2013-2017.  http://www.estherhizsa.com 

About Esther Hizsa

Esther is a spiritual director and writer. She lives in Burnaby with her husband, Fred, and they have two grown children and two grandchildren.
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