Recently I made a new friend. Well, to be more accurate -- I recently had an acquaintance of nearly a decade turn into a friend. Wanna know how?
By kicking the ever-present elephant to the curb!
Yup. For the past 8 years, there has been an elephant in the room anytime said acquaintance and I were together. We both knew it was there -- afterall, it's pretty hard to not see an elephant when it's standing right in front of you!
So how exactly did I accomplish this figurative task of giving this large mouse-fearing animal the ol' heave-ho?
I verbally acknowledged that it was there. I swallowed my pride. I admitted to myself that I had been unfair. I put aside my anxieties and I followed through with the nudgings from God that I was getting. And -- here's the kicker -- I apologized for my part...my h-u-g-e part...in inviting the elephant into the room in the first place.
This apology was g-r-a-c-i-o-u-s-l-y accepted and returned. Soon after, this then turned into an open conversation between the two burdened owners of the rather heavy beast, that was filled with honesty and respect as the past was not forgotten, but was forgiven.
As it turns out, elephants don't like forgiveness -- for our constant companion of the past 8 years promptly turned around, tucked his tail between his legs, made a harrumpf! of disappointment and stomped out the door. Just like that.
Phew! It's not easy being the keeper of an elephant. You know what's a lot easier to take care of?