I’m still digesting the feast laid out by poet David Whyte yesterday at a gathering held at Hennepin Ave UMC.

In talking about the wild learning project that is living and loving, he spoke of the power of forgiveness.

Whyte said that if a friendship has lasted over the years, each individual has had opportunity to forgive and be forgiven through the years.

In order for relationship to be, forgiveness is a crucial ingredient.

What gift it is to greet and name forgiveness as necessary in relationship rather than trying to dodge the reality that there will be bumps and hurting through any companionship that is real.

The acknowledgement of the sometimes heartbreak and disappointment that is living in relationship is a unique gift given by the teachings of Jesus.

According to an insight shared by some wise person I encountered in my reading, while all religious traditions teach a version of the Golden Rule (do unto others as you would have them do unto you), Christianity is unique in that Jesus was specific about how it is we are to practice the soul art of forgiveness.

I’m grateful for that.

This morning I sat over coffee with two women I have known as friends for over twenty years.  As I took in the gift of their being I was aware of gratitude for forgiveness given and received.  I can’t remember that we’ve gotten into major scrapes through the years, but I know that hurts and challenges have accompanied our relationships.

Yet there we were, the forgiving and the forgiven, reveling in the miracle of years lived in each other’s company.

Being human is no solitary pursuit.

Soul gifts come in the stretch and song of loving.

Forgiveness frees, teaches, and waters the tender bungle that we are.

Thanks be.