Forgiving someone is hard. It takes all of your might to really let go of the pain and hurt that you feel. My best advice comes from my own experience. I had to forgive my brother for the worst thing that has ever happened in my life. When I forgave him I looked at him and said it. Then I said I can’t be in your life anymore. It broke my heart, twice.
Danny was my little brother. He was always into trouble. And I took on the typical role of the big brother. Always watching out for him or helping him when things were getting bad in his life. I still have a lot of regret because I feel like I could have done more for him but the truth is, I did all that I knew how to do. I know a lot better now, but he passed away years ago. In my prayers I still ask God to watch out for him. I love him, he will always be my baby brother.
From that I learned that forgiving someone has nothing to do with what they did or say that caused your pain. It’s about releasing that bad energy you are carrying on your heart and lifting the weight off of your shoulders. This is all I can say to you about forgiveness.
Ask the person to stay open to your words in that moment. Ask them that you are going to talk to them about your perspective on the history of what you have. Keep in mind their history is going to be different than yours. Because people that share a hurt together often re-write the facts. Tell them how much what they have done or said has hurt you. Then tell them that you want to share the truth as you know it and ask them to correct anything you have wrong. Offer to listen to their side. This is when it gets really hard. Because most people take a defensive position. They don’t view themselves are someone that would purposefully hurt anyone. This is where staying open is the most important. You may not get back the same story you remember. You may learn the Why or the How from it. And that’s when forgiveness can begin. Say I forgive you for all the things I remember that caused me hurt. Then offer them to forgive you for carrying this hurt all of this time. It’s never going to be a moment of clarity and resolution. That comes within the hours of days of the conversation. But it’s so important to forgive people.
When you don’t forgive someone you are causing pain in your heart. It makes you not fully trust people in your life. It makes you feel like you are less than, that you are not worth this person treating you equal or fair. You feel justified in your pain, but also justified in holding yourself away from this person either physically or emotionally. And that does damage to you. So don’t do that.
Everything can be forgiven. Do you see that? Every act, no matter how horrible can be forgiven. Now that doesn’t mean it should ever be forgotten. Nor allowed to be repeated. But anything with God’s mercy and your open heart can be forgiven. It’s worth a tough conversation to feel the peace you have after your words are exchanged. You are worth it. The other person or people are worth it. And you will feel a sense of relief in your life.
Forgiving someone is important. Make it a priority in your life to forgive everyone. You will live a much happier, fuller life. I promise you that! I love ya’ll. God loves you too!
Because we are sinners we should forgive others
Matthew 6:14-15 NIV