Particularly when one is dealing with personal rejection or emotional hurt, the advice that is often given is to "let it go." It's good advice. It does no good to dwell on the things that cause one pain or to continue returning to the occasion of hurt. But I have found that it is advice that I am unable to follow. I cannot by force of will let pain and grief go. Yes, sometimes I forget for a little while. But invariably I stumble upon a reminder of the past and the reality of pain and loss returns.
And yet . . . .
While I have realized that I am incapable of letting go of deep hurts, it turns out that somehow, in time, they start to let go of me. Little by little they loosen their hold, and like Jack Dawson to Rose in The Titanic, they bid me go, swim toward the light, and keep on living. And if the ocean in which I am swimming is dotted with life raft after life raft of Word and Sacrament such that I see forgiveness and reconciliation everywhere I turn, then I know without a doubt that I am going to succeed in reaching that light. In fact, it turns out that light has already sought out and found me, and rescue is at hand.
'Bye, Jack. Rest in peace.