So that was the history, the introduction to God's epilogue.... You had to understand what had just been happening.
So there I was, sitting in a meeting, a gathering of more than just our team, and it was a time of brief sharing. When it was this man's turn, he got a little more time because of what had just happened. He briefly shared the events of the last days. Then he stopped, looked around, and his voice grew gentle. Then he said, -
"When I was over there, and phoned my wife to talk before I tried to go from here to there, she told me that Ellie was with her. I felt so comforted and loved that my wife was not alone. She didn't have to wait alone to find out if I would be safe or not."
Then he paused, and his voice broke before he continued:
" I have to confess something. When Ellie's husband was in trouble, we thought alot, but did not act, and we never went to see Ellie. That was not right. But she was there for my wife the whole day and the whole night so she had comfort. She knew what my wife needed and was there for her."
Tears began to roll down his cheeks and he looked over at me and said, "I'm so sorry we didn't come to be with you. We should have. We were wrong."
Aww... nothing more needed to be said. These are my friends, closer than my siblings. And he suddenly saw...
God's Epilogue. His perfect way of solving the problem. All He asked of us was the simple (didn't say easy!) choice to continue to love, and He had His solution. So, with that, the pain from the rift was gone. Forgiveness is easy when the choice to love has been made since love leaves no room for bitterness.
Still waiting for God's epilogue in regards to the team leader, but he is one I only have to deal with once or twice a year, and one with whom we have never been close. So there is little pain of a friendship ruined because there never was a friendship. Also, the knowledge that we are not the only ones who have struggled with interpersonal issues with this man. There are some people who you just step away from and develop a thicker skin knowing that they may simply lack some interpersonal skills that are common to others. Just as we can not expect a crippled man to run a marathon, so we can not expect some people to use the sensitivity and awareness of others that they do not possess. Then it becomes something we can take less personally and simply realize that not all people are skilled in compassion and care. His actions and reactions do not reflect on who I am, but only on who he is.