Forgiveness is hard. Forgiving an offender is hard. Let’s just cut through the junk we hide behind and tell the truth. It is hard. Oh, not so much when someone cuts us off in traffic or steals that parking place we had our eye on. We can move on pretty quickly when the offense is not relational. But it is in relationships that we have the potential to be hurt, offended, betrayed, and find ourselves with a heart struggling to forgive (and it is in relationships that we also have the potential to hurt others, offend others, betray others. As a matter of fact, all, and I do mean all, relationships must deal with this issue.)Whether it is words spoken or the lack or words spoken when we needed them, actions taken or the lack of actions taken, or the million other ways we can be hurt, at times we all find ourselves at times in the position of having a major offense in our hearts that needs to be dealt with.
Turning 50 has opened my eyes to a lot of things. But this forgiveness thing is the biggest issue lying on my heart. Forgiving others let’s me try forgive myself and heal. SO here are the hard lessons I am working with on for the summer:
Forgiveness Is a Gift We Give To Ourselves. It’s not that I do THEM a favor by letting go of the resentments, by forgiving, because I know that’s exactly what most of us think. Why should I forgive them for what they did to me? No way! I want them to suffer as much as I did! What really matters is that I need to allow myself to receive this gift, and even though this irritating voice inside my head will try to convince me not to do it, I should listen to my own heart.
I Will Find Peace of Mind. Peace of mind is what I find the moment I let will let go of any grudges I am holding on to, any resentments and any remorse. The moment I say to myself: It’s time to forgive! It’s time to forgive all of them and it’s time to forgive myself for not allowing peace to enter into my life earlier. I am working on the believing this every day.
When I Forgive, I Give Myself Permission to Live Fully. How many people do you know that go around with the intention to actually hurt somebody? The majority of people are doing the best they can with what they know, with where they are and with what they’ve got. I try to see everyone and everything as teachers who come with lessons you need to learn and master. I try to ask, OK what was I suppose to learn from this?
We all have a choice – we can chose to either be happy or unhappy. We can choose to hold on to resentments, waste our time and energy and be miserable; or we can choose to let go of everything that no longer serves us and enjoy life. I am choosing to enjoy…..
Quote for this week: Forgive others not because they deserve forgiveness, but because you deserve peace.