When I think about forgiveness, the first thing that comes to mind is FREEDOM. What a wonderful, awesome thing freedom is. When I have forgiven people who have hurt me or my family in some way, I feel like I can breathe so much more easily. In my younger days, I simply refused to forgive people. I was torn between two attitudes…revenge and martyrdom. Well, I could have done the revenge thing very well but martyr I am not. Then again the planning and thinking of how to get revenge was also a major hassle. It would just sit in my head and heart and wear me out and I would keep hitting replay on the old tape of the “hurt” and that felt very uncomfortable.
So, whether I liked it or not, I re-learned how to forgive. Sometimes it was just not safe for me to call or see the person or people I needed to forgive, so I would write a letter. I would write out all the gory details and how whatever they had done or said, had impacted my life or the lives’ of my family. I would never mail those letters. They would sit a bit in my Bible and then I would take the letter, go outside and burn them. I would watch as burning paper floated in the air on clouds of smoke and I always felt so much better.
Another thing I look at when it comes to forgiveness is that I have hurt people and I have gone back, when it is safe, and asked their forgiveness. I think people are shocked when others ask for forgiveness, which is also odd, as that is how we need to be living in the first place. When it’s all said and done, it is always better to forgive.
Forget. Will I really forget what was said or what was done? For the most part, God and time have amazing healing power…the more I understand the fact that the world does not revolve around me and it is absolutely no fun to live in drama and chaos and I don’t want the reputation of being “poor Sarah”, did you hear what was said or done to her…I laugh.
Learning to forgive is essential to so many aspects of your life. Un-forgiveness can cause all kinds of health issues, it will totally mess up your spiritual journey, and I promise you…you will be stuck where you are in the muck and the mire until you have truly learned to forgive and put it into practice consistently.
Try it. You will be a happier, healthier person for it.
Peace & Love