In one sense, of course, none of us merits anything good in life. (That sentence reveals my theological basis of everyone being a sinner.) What I failed to understand is that God loved me and forgave me. Once I truly accepted divine forgiveness, that led me to forgive others and feel compassionate toward others. Why couldn’t I love and befriend Cec the same way?
Although the process I went through is too complex to relate, for me, it came down to this. I didn’t warrant compassion until I saw myself as a beloved child of God. If that was true, I didn’t have to prove anything or do anything to make myself lovable.
I have three children and I love them very much. If I look at their lives, I can easily point to their flaws or take note of the ways they disappointed me. Instead, I knew I loved them and thereby I accept each of them as they are.
The hardest words I recall saying to myself were these: “I am loveable.” Although I said them aloud to myself daily, for almost a month I wanted to add, “because I . . .” and list my good deeds. Or I’d have to fight myself by adding, “But look at . . .”
I know I’m loved and worth loving.
I can show myself compassion.