Marcy S., age 47, North Carolina

Last week’s deep depression has lifted a little — mainly because the Taylors’ barbecue is over. And because Pickett called, after receiving my down and out letter, to say he didn’t have the answers to my questions but that he hurt for me and was praying for me.

I keep thinking that if I try hard enough some new insight or understanding will come which will be the answer. There must be some missing piece to the puzzle of why I can’t let go of the past and accept myself and forgive my parents and be an emotionally mature person.

One thing — even though my parents made me feel rejected, insecure, unclean, etc. etc. I blame myself even more than I blame them — I feel as if there were some reason within myself — just my very existence — that caused them to treat me as they did. This isn’t rational, I know — an innocent, helpless child cannot be responsible for her parents’ jealousy and hostility. Yet I feel it was somehow my fault — I supposed that’s the way I felt as a child, which is understandable. But not to be able to outgrow those feelings —

Complete surrender of our past, our future and our sins to Him. This is what I need to do — but how?