"Being True to Ourselves" ~ Women's Sunday Series

Ever experience a “dark night of the soul”?  real dark night of the soulThose times when our hearts are deeply troubled and we’re not sure why! We just know something is terribly wrong, peace eludes us and only concerted effort keeps our mind from returning – time and time again, to the questions of the “dark night”?

That was my experience over the past number of months. Without revealing every detail, I will share that anguish and pain experienced from the lips of a supposed loved one suddenly showed up in my life. With a vengeance!

The interesting thing about the situation was that the viciousness of words spoken occurred more than 39+ years ago. In the interim, life changed dramatically and the perpetrator was rarely around to drip on me! Then with little warning, the person was back!

Yes I know, we have choices. We don’t have to permit such folks to darken the corners of our lives with their ‘stuff’. But some situations are somewhat beyond our total control and we have to find unique ways to avoid a repeat of ancient events. That is the case in my case!

Nothing happens in life coincidentally or by accident. It was no coincidence or accident the person was back. She was there for a reason and I knew that. What I struggled with was “why”. Why suddenly, without warning, was someone who was the source of so much pain – back to do it again? Was it really because of a desire to participate in family events at a time most precious to me?  Or was PAPA trying to get my attention in order to move me beyond a “dark night” of which I was unaware – or had forgotten?

Gnarled Tree Roots --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Gnarled Tree Roots — Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Truth is, it happened in order to remove what is called “a root of bitterness” that had, without my realization, grown up in my heart. In the process of dealing with the darkness which set in after nasty words dripped again – I was forced to confront the truth of what began over 50 years ago and was never adequately put to rest. Put to rest when it should have been done!

Some life experiences require what we call a “working through“. They are of such magnitude that a “one time fits all” won’t do it. It takes more than hours or days. And it takes revelation in small spurts in order to process the extent of the “root” and how embedded it is in our souls.  In my case, the years-past experience had devastating consequences for me and my late husband. Something we realized late in our lives together. And something I had forgotten existed.

Imagine the anger I felt when the door of recognition swung open and realization took root in my mind! But with realization came wisdom and understanding as what motivates folks who enjoy ridiculing others. All good and well – but what to do about it?

I prayed for resolution; but it didn’t come. I prayed for guidance and I thought PAPA was being silent. I prayed to forgive, but could only say it half-heartedly because I wasn’t sure I wanted to forgive. I poured out my anger in divine conversation; let the years of pent up tears flow, hoping that was the resolution I sought. And over and over – and over, I cried out for PAPA to resolve the situation.

Hum, resolution didn’t seem to be in the cards. At least by divine intervention I might call “miraculous”. No, resolution would only come via me. It was (and is) up to me to resolve the situation as He puts the ax to the root of a tree called ‘bitterness‘. But not before I can speak my truth to the perpetrator without malice, anger or twinge of bitterness. And not with fire blazing from my eyes. . .

What have I learned – learned that I can pass onto you for your growth in the Spirit? That we must grow mature enough to speak our own truth. Not just to PAPA and ourselves; but to those who sit at the base of our tree, weaving roots that will eventually choke out health and well being.

That no matter how long ago evil entered our lives and bitterness began to take root; we can resolve it when we. . .dark night of the soul 2

Know it! Understand it! And resolve to set the record straight in as much love as we can muster. Love for our Heavenly Father whose Will we are asked to do. Love for ourselves because He made us to be healthy and well. And love for the other who must hear our truth – regardless of how they choose to deal with it!

Have I rushed out to set the record straight? No. Am I still encountering the “dark night of the soul”? Less and less each day. Am I ready to set the record straight? Yes – when the time is right and the Lord opens a door in which the other and I encounter each other. And the truth!

It has been said that “the truth will set us free!” And it does. But first it may make us miserable. I’m learning the best way to avoid misery is to speak our truth at the first sign of any life experience that carries the risk of a bitter root forming in places for which it is not designed to reside.

May my experience and sharing it be a source of courage and comfort to any reading this who have or are experiencing a “dark night of the soul“.  May you rise up and determine to speak your truth. First to PAPA – then to yourself. Then to anyone – or anything – that holds you back from fullness in Him. And the health and well being for which He so richly designed you!

Warm blessings,


Linda S. Fitzgerald, CEO & Visionary Partner
Champion of Ordinarily Extraordinary Women of the World
A Women’s Place Network, Inc. dba
Affiliated Women International
Empowering Women to Thrive

Image Sources: Pinterest, Kenneth Kuykendall and Inspirational Words & Quotes via Google Images

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://affiliatedwomeninternational.com//wp-content/uploads/2015/05/linda-google-NB-profile-pic.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]I have a ‘fiery’ passion to see women become all they are designed to be – personally, professionally and most of all – spiritually. I write, teach, mentor and coach with that passion in mind. As an author and prolific blogger, I reach out to women in all walks of life, especially women of faith to empower and equip them for greatness. [/author_info] [/author]

Linda S. Fitzgerald

I have a fiery passion to see women become all they are designed to be - personally and professionally. I write, teach, mentor and coach with that passion in mind. As an author and prolific blogger, I reach out to women in all walks of life, especially women of faith to empower and equip them for greatness.


  1. Vicky Briscoe on May 24, 2015 at 9:24 am

    This has touched me so profoundly. We all suffer from “the dark night of the soul”..some without realizing it. This is my case. Thank you for such a powerful article. I, too, need to work on forgiveness.

  2. linda on May 27, 2015 at 1:38 pm

    Vicky – so sorry I didn’t see your response until just moments ago. I’m delighted to know the post touched you and that you know of and understand what I mean by “dark night of the soul”. I pray you too will find the understanding I am finding and that forgiveness takes root in your life as it is in mine!

    Hope you will stay in touch!



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