Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Three steps toward Forgiveness...

This is actually a blog post I started writing a very long time ago.  After reading it just now, I have to admit I can't believe I wrote it.  It was a good reminder for me, and hopefully will be for you too!

A few years ago, I went through an event that required some major forgiveness on my part.  After the dust settled and I was able to see things a bit clearer,  I knew that I would want to forgive, but I didn't know if I would be able to.

Now fast forward two years later, and I have to say that forgiving someone and moving on is the HARDEST thing I have ever done.  Actually it the hardest thing I have ever tried to do.

I realized the other day, this job is never really done. 

This is a daily chore; right up there with dirty laundry, and emptying the dishwasher.  Everyday, I need to ignore the pain and choose to love.  I need to forget what was lost, and look forward to what can be gained.  Everyday I need to die to myself and choose to live for something else.

This is the only thing that will truly bring freedom.

Dying to myself is really hard.  Especially when we are bombarded with images of happy carefree people; people on vacations, people celebrating fun birthdays, and people who just don't look like they are busy with laundry, or dishwashers, or forgiving.

Sometimes it feels like those of us who are burdened with the job of forgiveness are missing out on something. It feels like we were robbed, or have a harder life.    But to be completely honest, I don't think that is true.

I think this is a part of EVERYONE's Life.  I think learning to forgive is God's plan for all of us.  I think successfully forgiving a major pain in our life can really and truly set us free.

Some of us choose to actually take that path, and some of us put it off until later.  Some of us, think the whole process is just too darn scary to take part in, and we bury it deep down and try never to think about it again.  The truth is I really believe that every single one of us is going to be called to learn this important life skill.

Oh Boy, let the fun begin.

Prayer is pretty much the only thing that I have done that has helped this process at all.  Here are some practical things to pray for if you are struggling with forgiveness.

Step One:  Pray for perspective.  When you are in a messy situation it is nearly impossible to see clearly.  If you are able to remove yourself, and get a little perspective this can tremendously lighten the burden.  Maybe this wasn't even about you.  Maybe this was truly about the other person, and their issues.  It still won't feel great, but it will feel better.

Step Two:  Pray for Grace.  However bad this sounds the truth is, that whoever hurt you was created good by God.  Ask God for the grace to see this person as HE sees them.  Ask for the Grace to be able to think of the reasons this person was in your life in the first place. IF it is a parent, or a child, or relative, you may not have chosen this person to be in your life,  but if it a friend or spouse you did.  What are the good qualities of this person?  There must be some?  This is a hard thing to pray for, but asking God to remind you of the good in this relationship is an IMPORTANT part of forgiving.

Step Three: Pray in Gratitude.


Yes.  That was not a typo.

Give thanks to God for this opportunity to forgive.  This sounds insane, and it is.  But it is SO POWERFUL.   Gratitude for whatever burden you are struggling to forgive will put you leaps and bounds ahead of your forgiveness game.   If you don't know where to start try something like this:

"God, thank you for providing me this HUGE opportunity to learn forgiveness.  Out of all the people in all of the world, you chose ME for this important assignment.  You are the ultimate forgiver, and now you are inviting me to join you in transforming the world through forgiveness.  I don't know why you think I am capable of this, but you say to trust you in all things.   So even though there is NOT AN OUNCE OF MY BEING that wants to learn this lesson of forgiveness.  I believe YOU WANT me to learn forgiveness, so help me please!!!  Like right now....  No seriously, immediately.  Can you please just make it happen???  Can't you just re-program me, to be able to do this easier?   Actually can't you just re-program this other person, so that they don't mess up so bad, so that I don't have to learn this lesson in forgiveness?!?!?"


Okay, maybe try your own prayer instead of mine.  I am still working on this whole forgiveness thing.

1 comment:

  1. power of prayer! You are amazing! I'll pray for you if you pray for me. Love you!