Writing Exercise No. 9


Assignment: Write a two-page open letter to someone who has touched your life. Say the stuff that matters most to you. Don’t try to be funny. Just be.

I’ve done this one before, but I’m going to take another whack at it.
*Name Changed

Dear Victoria*,

We’ve known each other our entire lives, from the moment of conception, even. Sometimes I think you’ve known me longer than I’ve known myself, yet there are days when I look at you, and I have no idea who you are anymore. You started off as this simple, beautiful girl and transformed yourself into something hideous and wicked. You prayed with me though, and you got clean with me, too. You went through all of my hardest days and nights with me, and for that, I could never repay you, but, still, there are things that need to be said in order for us to move forward.

You’ve put me through so much in my life, so many unnecessary trials, it makes me wonder… Do you even care for me? You’re constantly flooding my life and my mind with worry and anxiety over the future, asking me questions like, “How do you speak so much, do so little and still manage to live with yourself each day?” You’ve single-handedly brought me to the brink of suicide and left me there with no regard as to how I will ever make it back from that ledge. Just admit it, I’ve never been good enough for you. You knit-pick at my every flaw, seen and unseen. You analyze my every thought and feeling with excruciating intensity, searching for anything you can use to condemn me with. I don’t even know what to say about how you scrutinize my body. If I ever was, or if I ever will be beautiful in any way, I’ll never know it. You would die long before you would allow me to see anything, but imperfections when I look in the mirror on the wall or even in the one in my heart.

You’re always leading me down paths that you and I both know will lead us away from Peace and Truth. It’s a dangerous cycle, lady. One of these days, maybe we won’t find our way back to the Right Path. What then, huh? You gotta road map from decadence to enlightenment? ‘Cause I sure don’t. There’s always a bunch of eager (and probably prideful) Christians ready to tell us exactly where we should go with our lives, but as you know, their advice often lacks a skilled perspective. I think Christians like a God of formulas, and truly, no relationship with anyone works according to formulas, so why would giving us one for Jesus do us any good? Is not every circumstance different and contextualized? Duh. So why would the same answer work to solve every problem? It wouldn’t. So I suggest if you don’t want to have to go through the grueling process of picking through bad advice from good, trying to make a map out of it and getting us lost on our way from Decadence to Obedience in the land of Luke-Warm, you’d do best to serve us both by staying on the clearly lit path we’re somewhat on right now. Honestly, I’m sick of watching you strain your eyes to see the invisible road ahead. If you don’t know what you’re aiming for, it probably isn’t anything good for you.

Maybe I could deal with all of that, y’know, but there are some things I cannot excuse. One being that you constantly use my Savior, the Lord of my life, as a weapon against me. After pointing each and every finger at me, you then point at the Cross, spelling out for me all the ways I am not worthy of His grace. As if what I have done or continue to do could ever overshadow that which Christ, Himself has done! You are a torment to my relationship with God, always weighing the vanity of this life as more fulfilling than the work of the Lord. I can walk fresh and clean out of a beautiful meeting with His majesty, and immediately you rail me with doubt, attacking my faith, and invalidating personal experience as if a two-year relationship with the Most High can be chalked up to learned insanity.

Don’t even get me started on the mental health issue. You’re always bringing my sanity into question as though it’s not normal to have a hard time dealing with life once in a while. I used psychoactive and hallucinogenic drugs for eight years, I’d be a little surprised if I didn’t walk away from that with at least a few screws loose. God wrestles you for the throne in my mind, daily, to tighten those bolts back into their proper setting, and you sit there and have the nerve to tell me that God can do nothing to heal me, that Christ’s healing was either a myth or specific to His day and ministry. Using the Word against my faith, how dare you!

After all that, though, what hurts the most is knowing the person I love (you) is neither right for me nor capable of loving me back, and yet, I am incapable of leaving you. You’ve got a deeper grip on my mind than cigarettes. I’ve tried so hard to make you change your ways. I’ve fed you Truth, I’ve given you the testimony of people you trust, and I’ve tirelessly battled with you night after sleepless night. Sometimes I doubt if you even want me to accept grace. Sometimes I wonder if you like making things so hard on me, y’know, to play up the drama of it all. My life isn’t an action movie, dear, and I know that displeases you, even makes you a bit restless, but I don’t need you to create and put me up against unfavorable odds all the time. Life does that on its own, and it’s hard enough to get through those ones.

I think I finally get it, girl. You want so badly to have complete dominion in my life, so you create problems you hope you can fix in order to satisfy that deep hunger for power and control in your life. Well, let me tell you something, Victoria. You did a really magnificent job creating for me all of these hoops, but the problem is, I can’t jump through them and neither can you. If I didn’t have God, I would’ve shot us both a long time ago.

I’m writing this to you because I’m hoping someday we can be friends. I don’t know what title we’ve been operating under so far, but it certainly hasn’t been anything positive. I’m praying that we can start working on a road to friendship. Right now, even. It’s going to take a long time for me to forgive you, but I’m willing to start trying if you’re willing to change. I need you to stop hurting me. I need you to ask God to help you work out faith in your own salvation and to teach you how to re-program your thought patterns because they’re really hurting me. I mean, I’m slowly dying here, a little more each day. It may not be a visible digression, but I swear it’s happening. I don’t know if you have the perspective to clearly see what you’re doing, and maybe that’s why you continue to do it. If that’s the case, ask Him for wisdom. James 1:5 says that those who lack wisdom should seek God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to them. Ask this in faith, sister, and I know He will provide for your need.

I care about you, I truly do. Somehow through everything, I still want what is best for you because I know that what is best for you is what is best for me as well, and the only way I know that’s true is because I know I am you. I know what I do to myself, and I’m tired.

Love, Me.

P.S. Did you catch that? That was witty, huh? The whole love me bit? ha. yeah.

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