I wonder who is at the door at this 8:30 pm on a Sunday? Upon pulling open the door, I find a neighbor a little red in the face and looking a bit out of breath. Before I can even say hello, she shouts at me, "do you know, you have a child on the roof?"
I look back at her and say, "yes. I know my teenage daughter in on the porch roof."
She physically steps back, and then repeats her question, "I'm sorry, but you have a Child on the Roof!" With great emphasis on the word roof! I tell her, "yes, I know. She asked if she could take a break and sit on the roof."
Appalled by my lack of surprise, concern, or worry that my 16-year-old is sitting on the porch roof (12 feet above the ground) playing her ukulele. She shouts, "I thought you might be worried about the safety of your child. I can see now that you don't care for her."
Now, how would you handle the rest of this situation? Well, here is my human response. I GOT ANGRY! I wish I could say I offered her grace, care, and turned the other cheek, but no. Sigh...I am human, and well...
Why? I felt like she was sticking her nose into business that was not her own. (Now mind you if my 5-year-old was sitting on the porch roof, I would have had a different response.) My 16-year-old is the one who helps me hang the Christmas lights, and so to say that I was worried or concerned would not even cross my mind.
What followed next was not great, I followed her off of my property to help her understand, again to keep her nose out of my business. Soon, she was screaming that I was a 'terrible mother, a crazy lady,' and then she was swearing at me. The last straw was the threat of calling CPS on me.
I wish I could say I was caring and grateful for her information, but I was not. My anger dimmed my light.
After tucking in everyone for bed and reflecting on the day, I knew I had to get over this. I lay in bed thinking and praying when I heard a simple voice, "forgive her." Gulp! Really? But...but...but.....and all the excuses and justification were popping up in my head. "Yes. Let it go. You have work to do." Heavenly Father was telling me to be vulnerable.
Why do I share this even with you? Well, it is to show that we all make mistakes and respond in dumb ways that dim our light. I make many mistakes in writing, in relationships (like staying in abuse for over nine years), and in interacting with my neighbor. Rats, I was just reminded about the scripture “Love thy neighbor as thy self.” Yeah, I did not love anyone at that moment. But don’t worry, I won’t stay down or degrade myself about it. I am making these mistakes as “learns” and move forward.
Hey, y'all, please don't stay in the dark over your actions in the past (even if that past was just two days ago). Let's help you get passed them. Here is a way that might help. Tune into my BEACON of LIGHT podcast each Tuesday night on FB at 7:30 pm live and see which author can share the light with you.
If you can't show up live, no worries, I have them on my Youtube Channel. Playlist Beacon of Light PODCAST. (Please subscribe, like and share--we want to be a Beacon of Light to the world.
I know I am going to go to episode #14 with Cathy Studer and remember how I can forgive others.
Thanks, y'all, for hanging onto this long one.