A story about Hazel Bryan and Elizabeth Eckford popped up on my timeline as I was writing about forgiveness. It was an older article, written in 2011, about the unlikely friendship of Eckford, one of the Nine who tried to integrate Little Rock Central High School in 1957, and Bryan, immortalized in all her racist rage, trying to prevent that from happening.
Their friendship blossomed after Bryan apologized, grew into a partnership over their shared experience, and then shriveled under the weight of suspicion from their communities and each other. Bryan’s conversion to and activities as an activist were not enough to gain forgiveness and acceptance among those she had hurt.
And I wondered…are we ever permitted to transition from the mistakes we’ve made…transform in the eyes of those who judge us harshly? Are there some grievances too egregious to be forgiven?
“Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you.” Colossians 3:13, MSG
Inhale Friendship, Exhale Unforgiveness…
Inhale Forgiveness, Exhale Unforgiveness…
Inhale Freedom, Exhale Unforgiveness…