There’s something I need to get off of my heart. It’s been suffocating me like an oversized weighted blanket for the last year, and with each passing day I become ever more aware that it is coming between me and God. This blog post is different than any I’ve ever written. It’s intended for two people–me and one other (who, at the time of this writing, is legally forbidden to have any contact with me). So why a blog post? Well, I suppose it’s the only hands-off way to go about it, and who knows if there’s a chance of her actually reading it? If sharing it will help others work through feelings of unresolved hurts or offenses, I suppose that’s a good bonus.
I’ve struggled with whether this is a good idea or not; I’ve struggled with the sickening need to see your face again, and I’ve beaten myself up over this insane pit in my heart that somehow misses you, despite everything you’ve done.
The simple fact is I absolutely NEED closure, and this is the only way I can feasibly ever even come close to getting it. I have prayed until the words won’t come. I have had actual, verbal debates with myself in the bath. I’ve laid awake more times than I care to admit, agonizing over every word, every discussion, and every red flag I should have seen. I know I will never be able to live with my own thoughts unless I get them out of my crowded head. I need to move on. I need to say these things, and the words need to be out here in cyberspace where you can’t dismiss them or throw them away. I need that ridiculous sense of permanence to heal my heart.
While ideally, this should be said face to face, legally that won’t happen. Even if it could, I can’t do it. I know what you’ve said about the two of us who investigated you, gathered evidence on you, and turned you in. I know how you’ve tried to spin things so we are the evil Christians who treated you so horribly.
I also know the truth.
The plea deal that you got for deceiving thousands of people online and hundreds in real life will never be enough to make us feel like justice was served. To us, you didn’t just lie. You didn’t just take money, favors, gifts, food, clothing, and provisions. You took our trust. You took our love and rubbed our faces in it. You took advantage of people who wanted to help, and you did it in a way that would make us look like monsters if we ever questioned what turned out to be a web of lies. The state calls what you did a property crime, and your victims should be happy to “get their money back”. Funny, but the ones I’ve spoken with don’t want the money back. You can never repay what you’ve taken.
It disgusts me to look back and recall how enthusiastically I put myself out there to defend you when others didn’t believe your lies. Whether you want to believe it now, you WERE family to me. I meant every word. My heart was behind every bit of the encouragement I poured out to you, even while you complained to your online followers that you had “no one” in real life but your kids. What you did to MY children was unthinkable, but to make your own children believe their mother was dying, and then to let them shave their heads to support your lie? The only word for that is cruelty. You did it willingly.
The truth is I don’t want to forgive you. Yes, I said that. I want to do what comes naturally–to hate you. Being lied to, used, manipulated, and taken advantage of has left my heart bitter toward you. To hear your attorney tell the press that you “owned up to” what you did when I know you’ve ranted to people since your arrest how awful you were treated by the very ones you took advantage of is sickening to me and reeks of a lack of remorse. I could very easily hate you.
But I can’t do that. It’s not in me. I want to see you actually repent of what you’ve done. Real godly sorrow. I want to see you turn away from the corruption and deception that has been your way of life for so long and hand yourself over fully to God. I want to see you become the person you claimed to be. I want to see what God and His transformative power can do in your heart. I want to see you in heaven. But that’s on you. None of us can help you now.
DO what your attorney said you wanted to do–make it right. But first, with God. Until your heart is right, your actions will continue to be warped.
I’ve got no choice but to let my hurt go. But that’s just for me. I pray you will do what you need to do for your own soul’s sake. I pray that you will seek forgiveness instead of just release from the consequences of your actions. I pray that one day, you’ll learn how to live truthfully and as a victor over your own demons.