....I suppose this is the best word I could use to describe how my soul feels....heavy.
I have spent my time, energy, and thoughts these past few months in regards to a Victim Impact Statement that I have needed and wanted to write to the State of New York Parole Board.
Over 21 years ago, my aunt Ruthie was brutally murdered by her husband. Coming up in November that man will face the parole board to see if he may be released early on parole. His sentence was 21 years - life......he has served his minimum 21 years
I have been trying for to months to compose my victim impact statement, I just finished it tonight. I feel like it is crap, like I am not doing my Aunt Ruthie any justice, and yet I am trying so hard to do right by her and my grams.
A couple of weekends ago I sat with my grams, brother, sister in law, and my mama to video tape my grams' victim impact statement....it was heart wrenching. I was able to take part in some very candid, very raw conversations.....I feel closer to my family because of it....I truly am blessed to have the parents, the brothers, and sister in laws that I do.
Me not wanting him to be released from prison is not a matter of forgiveness, it's about justice. I read in a book recently that to forgive someone is "to let go of their throat". And I sat and cried over that statement for a long time, because at times, i wonder...if I ever saw him, the man who murdered my aunt, the man I called my uncle; if I ever saw him face to face, would I be able to let go of his throat??
At times I can answer confidently that I would, other times, actually many times, I am not so sure that I could.
Forgiving doesn't mean forgetting, and I am justified in being angry, if my anger is rooted in seeking justice and fighting against what is unjust. God calls us to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with Him. I don't do that very well, but I sure am trying. So am I capable of having a righteous anger towards an unjust act, while still having mercy towards the man that took something so precious?
I am trying, I truly am trying. But it is really really hard.
......love the least