Big-hearted people

Decisions are hard. Sometimes they bring out the worst in my anxiety-prone personality. And I’m facing some particularly big ones as I decide the next few months of my life. Decisions about jobs, moving, family, money, school… those kind.

And sometimes, it makes me mean — the clutchy, snippy, sulky kind of mean. And sometimes, he’s my target. I hide behind excuses of stress and trepidation, but the truth is I’m pushing his buttons, trying to hit his limit, to push him over the edge, so I can feel even more sorry for myself. So I can feel even more alone.

Sometimes it works. Sometimes I do feel more alone.

“I’m uncomfortable making decisions slowly,” he says.
“I’m uncomfortable making decisions quickly,” I say.

We look at each other for a bit. Then sigh and look away. Planning is hard. Loving is hard.

I fold my arms across my chest and make sure my brow is furrowed. I glance at him to make sure he’s watching before turning to face away from him. I tell him I’m lost in this conversation. And he’s quiet for a minute.

“Do you want to pray?” he asks gently.

“No.” I say flatly. Even though my heart aches at the suggestion. I can already feel the pull toward that holy space of forgiveness and humility. How long do I have to hold on to this sinking ship before I’ll let go and swim to the lifeboat a few yards away?

He waits.

I say a few more self-indulgent, over-dramatic things. And then, I pry my fingers off the bow and doggy paddle towards rescue. I ask if the offer to pray is still open, and we sit down facing each other and hold hands. And his words are so open and healing as he invites God to walk with us through these decisions that all I can say when it’s my turn to speak is:

“Loving God, please help us be big-hearted, forgiving people. Amen.”

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