Thursday, October 29, 2015

Forgiveness

Forgiveness, Forgive or Not to Forgive, Blended family, stepmom, step mother
To forgive or not to forgive, which one will you choose to do? Don’t you want that sense of freedom of not feeling like you’re in a jail cell? When you chose to not to forgive someone, it’s like you’re in a jail cell without any parole.  When you chose to forgive, you’re escaping the jail or prison sentence. You feel a sense of freedom and a release.  It’s also much better for your health. Harboring resentment and forgiveness cause health problems and a lot of stress. When you allow what someone does or says to upset you, you’re allowing them to control you
There have been many things my stepdaughter has done or said to me in the past seven years which has really hurt me deeply.  She’s never once apologized for anything she has done or said to me, which makes forgiving her even harder for me. The most recent offense she did was over a year and a half ago while we were on vacation when she said out of anger that I was a terrible mother. This hurt me terribly and she’s never once apologized for it and I am not expecting her to do so anymore.  For one, she was never taught to apologize when she is in the wrong for something she has done, she’s not been taught to own up to what’s she’s done, unfortunately.  I can choose to keep the hurt and bitterness I have towards what’s she has done or I can choose to forgive her and try to understand that hurt people, hurt other people.

Forgiveness is a process of these three steps:
1. Surrender the right to get even with the person who did you wrong.
2. You need to revise your caricature of the person who hurt you so much. Meaning you need to reconstruct the image of what you see in that person.
3. You need to revise your feelings towards that person. Meaning going from feelings of rage and resentment towards that person to feelings of wanting them to be blessed.
I know it might seem that sometimes forgiveness seems unfair.  There is something unjust about a person’s dastardly deeds going unpunished.  But God says: “Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: it is mine to avenge; I will repay, says the Lord.” Romans 12:19. Forgiving someone helps you to let go of the past hurts and look ahead to the future. Forgiveness is also an act of faith. When you forgive someone you are simply trusting that God is a better justice-maker than you are.  Leave the issues of fairness up to God to work out. The wrong doesn’t go away when you forgive, but you’re not harboring it inside of you and letting it control you anymore.
The longer you wait to forgive someone the more at risk you are of becoming a person defined by your anger rather than a person who has a grievance.  People who carry hatred and resentment will invest themselves so deeply in that resentment that it gradually defines who they are. In Ephesians 4:32 it says: Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. When you forgive someone it lets the control of the offense lift out of you and you feel like a big weight has been lifted off of you.  Sometimes we need to forgive the same person over and over again. Let go, and Let God deal with the offense.  Sometimes the person that we are holding an offense with doesn’t even know that they offended you. It’s better to just let it go.  Only you can decide if you want to feel better, as Rachelle Katz said “Healing happens more quickly when you consciously initiate the process.” 
God can take what was meant for your harm and turn it around and use it to your advantage. God will give you the strength that you didn’t even know you had. He’s done it for me and he will do it for you, but the first step is forgiveness.

Have you ever been hurt by someone close to you? How were you able to forgive and move on from it?


References:
Katz, Rachelle. (2010). The Happy Stepmother. Stay Sane, Empower Yourself, Thrive in Your New Family. Harlequin

16 comments:

  1. My pastor always says that when we forgive, we do it to help ourselves....

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  2. I always forgive whether the person apologized or not. It's easier to move on when you forgive.

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  3. This is not always easy but it is so important. I have seen too many people get consumed by their anger, so remembering this and taking the step to forgive is crucial. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. You did an excellent job on this one. I'm so proud of you. You can forgive someone, but not have them apart of your life. I'm really bad at blowing things off. I need to work on that.

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  5. "What you focus on, you find." When you focus on the good qualities you love about a person, it's easier to forgive and set aside the things they say or do that offend you.

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  6. This is a great reminder. I saw a quote somewhere that said, "holding on to anger is a lot like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die".
    Thought that was also a great way to put it in perspective. Thanks for sharing!

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  7. I've always keep this quote in mind when I get mad 'Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.'

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  8. This is a great reminder. Good for everyone. Though not always the easiest advise to take.

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  9. Forgiving is definitely about you, not the other person. We all say things in anger that we regret later, but sometimes don't know how to even ask for forgiveness.

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  10. Forgiveness is not always easy. But it is necessary for healing. These are great steps to forgiveness..

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  11. Forgiveness is not saying what the other person has done is right or ok. Forgiveness is cutting yourself free from guilt.

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  12. I've had some forgiving to do lately. This was very timely. Good post.

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  13. Harboring anger and reliving negative moments can really take a toll on a person. Thanks for the reminder!

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  14. To forgive is difficult if the people involved hurt you so badly that caused misery in your life. Yet time heals wounds, then forgiveness comes. Yes, the feelings toward those people is not the same. You don't trust them anymore. And for your own good, you don't want to see them again.

    Mhar Sefcik
    http://www.brightbundles.com

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  15. I think surrendering the right to get even with the person who did you wrong is on of the hardest things to do. Yet there is so much freedom in doing so. This is such an encouragement and challenge to us all!

    I think what stood out to me was: "Forgive others not because they deserve forgiveness but because you deserve peace."

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  16. Forgiveness is a process, but very important

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