Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Unbelievable ...

Oscar Wilde once wrote - "true friends stab you in the front ..."

Today for a number of reasons I recalled the moment in time where as the meeting dispersed that fired me from the Pastoral Relationship with the church in the lower mainland of BC, the Chair of the Board came up and offered me a hug and said: "You KNOW it was nothing personal ..."

NOTHING PERSONAL !!??

I had sat for two hours as EVERY LITTLE sin and misdeed I had ever done was thrown on the table ... I listened as my parenting, my ministry, my preaching, my time management, my sense of humour - EVERY FACET of my person was SAVAGED ... To say that I was left battered and bloodied by it, is to offer an under-statement of epic proportions ... It was ALL very personal and personally devestating ...

But in time I healed ... but I never fully recovered from the profound betrayal those attack embodied ...

Today I learned that maybe Wilde was right ... your true friends will look you in the eye when they plunge in the dagger ... Like Julius Caesar gazing upon Brutus kneeling before him, he watched as Brutus plunged in the knife before gasping - "Et tu Brute ..."

I've had one experience recently where a dagger was plunged into my heart, while the person "holding" it had the decency to look me in the eyes as they did it ... it didn't ease the pain, but atleast I know there was a friendship there ...

But it has been the cowardly attacks that have plunged knife after knife after knife in my back that I have grown tired of ...

- I've been lied about
- I've been lied to
- my house as been shot at
- my van has had the tire slashed
- my van has been shot at
- I've had good upstanding citizens flip me the finger as I walked down the street
- I've had venomous emails sent across the continent that spewed lies and untruths
- I've had my reputation not just sullied by destroyed
- I can see the reactions of many when they see me coming
- I've endured more than my fair share of betrayal and abuse
- I've had EVERY LITTLE misdeed chronicled and passed on
- I've had to justify EVERYTHING and in ALL things continue to be found wanting
- I've lost my job
- I've lost the career that I trained for and that I am DAMNED good at
- I've been hamstrung by people who are in it only for themselves
- I've had countless rumour and lies spread around town about me
- I've tried in ALL things to maintain my ethos, my values and my self-respect
- I've been MORE than adequately punished for my outspokenness
- I've taken my lumps for my misdeeds and mistakes
AND
- I've watched my children bear the brunt of ALL OF THIS AT SCHOOL ...

And so I've been left battered and bloodied ... but DAMMIT I'm still standing ... and I AM STRONGER than I have EVER been before.

But lately, the attempt by people in this community to Black Ball those who would associate with me, or that have for whatever reasons tried to maintain a friendship with me ... that's just too much. If waving the white flag is what it will take - so be it ...

They can't take any more from me, so instead they begin cowardly attacks on those who have tried to take the high road ... NICE !!!

But today a dagger was plunged in my back has cost me more than I care to even think about ... BUT, if nothing else, it has taught me a lot about me ... and it has taught me even more about how valuable my friendship has been to a whole circle of people ... it always sucks to be so wrong about stuff like that ...

Fortunately though, unlike Caesar, my wound is far from mortal ... I can extract the knife and the wound will heal ... but the damage done to friendships ... and damage to a community that claims to be warm and welcoming ... well, that wound runs deep - it would appear that the warmth and welcome is extended to you if you meet certain criteria, and clearly I never had ... so the welcome mat is being rolled up for me ...

SO be it ... it's NOT my loss ... I had much to offer (I STILL have much to offer) ... and in spite of the nastiness I've endured over the last couple of years, I've only wanted to see Minnedosa succeed and prosper ...

The ironic thing is that ALL of this transpired on a day when I had meeting after meeting with folks looking to make a difference to THEIR community, and wanting me to be part of thier team ... I was being invited in rather than being shut out and black balled.

It made me realize just why Brandon is growing in leaps and bounds, while places like Minnedosa are simply struggling ... it's all about being a team player ... the difference is whether the team is open to change and new ideas ... or not ...

And today I was reminded what it feels like to be the ONLY kid not chosen for the game ... it hurts ... especially when it comes with the realization of how disposable my friendship has truly been to so many ... fortunately, as I pass from this layer into the next one, moving ever deeper towards my life-purpose, I have the few true friends to accompany on the journey, and I keep encountering new ones along the way ...

... and with every step ... I learn more about me ... and my place in the world ... and most of all, WHAT I TRULY DESERVE in life ... and I know that I deserve more and much better than what I've been enduring lately ...

I've cared for my friends deeply, and I don't accept their departure lightly - but as I said - It is THEY'RE loss ...

Life will go on ...

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

just wondering, who do you think you are? are you exempt from rules that are imposed from all others?

just say you are sorry, that you were wrong, wrong, wrong...

and maybe, some, like Jesus, will begin to forgive you...

shawn said...

I HAVE always apologized for my misdeeds ... Just tell me what I have been wrong, wrong, wrong about ... and I will do what is necessary to make amends AND to OWN my responsibilities ...

I'm exempt from nothing ... never made that claim ...

and I never would ... I KNOW Jesus has forgiven me, and I've forgiven me ... the issue is whether OTHERS can move past their inadequacies and forgive not only ME, but themselves ???

AND that anonymous one, is a WHOLE other issue ...

Anonymous said...

ok this is all crazy! even worse then i had thought!!! so sorry you are enduring hell! so wrong.. what is going on in little town manitoba? shooting at your house and car??? wtf!!! you need to get the heck out of dodge before this destroys you anymore and particularly your kids!
wendy

MY OWN WOMAN... said...

Two brief comments Shawn:

1. You must be doing something right to convict so many people. Sometimes doing the right thing is the least popular....and for that you will be criticized. Rest.

2. You said: I've had to justify EVERYTHING and in ALL things continue to be found wanting

I say, justify ONLY to God.

Shawn, I love what you write more and more each day. I've been so busy lately, I've missed keeping up on reading your blog. For your information, your writings, your pictures, your gut wrenching revalations about yourself do ME good. So.... if you do it for just one.... keep doing it.