Relationship Surrendering


The following is from my wife's point-of-view, Mary Beth:

A big part of any healthy relationship, but especially a marriage, is the ability to forgive and forget. Because human beings are not perfect, we will from time to time screw up and have the need to be forgiven by our partners. The forgiving part can be easy, but the forgetting part can be hard to do.

It takes a lot of courage and strength to put the past behind us and move on, especially when someone we really love hurts us. After all, if we forgive and forget transgressions against us, are not we letting them off the hook? No, no, we can not do that since self-proclaimed correctness is what keeps the world turning. But here is the untold secret about forgiving and forgetting, it is ourselves who we are letting off the hook, not our transgressors. Carrying around anger and resentment towards those we love only wears us down and limits our ability to be truly happy.

I speak from experience in this area in regards to my relationship with my husband, Alex. When we reconciled after our eight-month separation in 2003, there where some things that needed to be forgiven and forgotten for us to come back together. I needed to trust him and open myself up to him and be vulnerable again for us to once again achieve true intimacy in our relationship.

I tried so hard and worked at it like you would not believe, but kept coming up short. I could not just let it all go without feeling out of control. I was really starting to believe it was hopeless when I read a book that changed my life. "A Return to Love" by Marianne Williamson taught me the practice of surrendering. She writes about surrendering what is impossible for you to bear to the Holy Spirit or a "higher power", whatever you believe in and ask it / him / her to do it for you. Okay, I know, I thought the same thing when I read it, too. "It can not be that easy, nothing works like that". I am here to testify as a human experiment, that it DOES work!

I thought of all the anger, resentment and inability to trust I was carrying around with me and visibly placed it at the "feet" of the Holy Spirit and said, "This is too big for me to handle and I need you to take care of it for me and release me from it's constraints. " This simple visualization that I felt down to my toes, released me from a prison in which I had the keys in my hands all the time. If you are living in your own prison, I strongly suggest you get the book and try it. You will not be disappointed.

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