Me Too.

I can’t help thinking that the true sign of progress will be, not just when victims of sexual harassment and violence all say “me too”, but when those who have committed acts of sexual violence openly say, “I did”. “I am part of the problem”. “It was wrong”. “I’m sorry”. “I will listen, learn, ask for help and accountability to never do it again”. “I will teach my sons, my friends, and anyone who will listen how to recognize and respect consent.”

For men to think they can protect women is as ridiculous as white people thinking we are supposed to save and fix all the “poor broken others” of the world. Protecting women is not the job of men. The job of men is to learn how to let go of the need to control and dominate, and instead to respect and cooperate, honoring the power and autonomy of women, just as woman also must learn to honor and respect the vulnerability and weakness that exists in men.

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Sermon

I have been forgiving you
Since the moment
I learned
But how can I respond
When you ask me for forgiveness now
Long after
I have cried my tears
Long after
I have stitched my heart
And coaxed it
To heal
How can I say
I forgive you
When the forgiveness I extended
For so long
Went unseen
How can you ask
“Forgive me”
When you never acknowledged
Your wrong?

I cannot be the one
To give you a badge
That says you have crossed
From that to this

I cannot be the one
To say,
Yes, now you are doing it right.

I did cry a river.
And then I moved my tent
And planted a new garden
New flowers
In new dirt
And I wait painstakingly
To see what grace will emerge
From my pain.

You hurt me.
Instead of speaking truth
You hid it
And when I found it
You ran away
And never looked back
Leaving me
To clear away the shrapnel,
My ears still ringing.

You slipped away slowly
Then quickly
As I grasped at ways to help
Ways to bring you back to life and love.
An honest parting of ways,
An honest confession that you did not love me
An honest word that,
Our time was good but it was over
Would have been a welcome balm.
I grieved that you did not count it worth your own pain
To tell me it was over,
Instead leaving me bewildered
Left to assume what must be true.

I forgive you and forgave you already,
But how can I be your priest
And absolve you of your wrong?
How can I forgive
What you never confessed?

Do not say to me,
“Forgive me, I have changed.”
Tell me the wrongs
That you now recognize
And tell me that you understand
Even a small bit
Of how I must have felt.
Tell me that at last
You feel a little bit
Of my pain
As I once felt yours
So deeply.
Tell me you are sorry.
You are so, so, sorry.

Please, be patient with me

omohara-tokyo-japan_68824_990x742photo source: Travel.NationalGeographic.com

Please be patient with me
I know
I have everything and everyone I need
And still
I feel pain, blindsided by a betrayal that I still can’t let go
I feel shame for what I put up with to not be alone
And I’m still catching up to the happiness around me
Trying to set to rest
The trauma from the past
So please, be patient with me
I don’t want to be a taker
I want to be a giver
Don’t want to be ungrateful
I want to be thankful
Overwhelmed by how far I’ve fallen behind
Overwhelmed by the need
Overwhelmed by the debt I owe to a community that has given me so much
So please be patient with me
I’ve had a million different versions of me
And I’ve been looking from mirror to mirror
To see what image is real
So please be patient with me
I know I will heal
My scars are already lighter
My future already looks brighter
But i know I’m still not where I want to be
So please be patient with me
I feel like a child in a body too big
Still trying to grow into myself
And make the in match the out
To push past the shoulds
To just be
So please
Be patient with me.

~Scarlet Ponder

Entry 9: How do I speak of my Christ?

I have had some experiences at work recently which have caused me to examine how I think about my beloved Christ and how much I really bank all I have (e.g. TRUST) in his promises.

My manager, a wonderful and compassionate woman who I greatly respect, noticed a brochure on the staff table that I had brought with me that day. It was advertising the healing school with Katie Souza that is coming up on January 28th and29th. I heard her say as she looked at it, “Who needs to go to that?” I told her that I had brought the flyers and she sort of stopped short and said “oh-” and then inquired as to what the conference was about. Continue reading