Forgiveness. This word carries so much weight and meaning. It’s said that forgiveness is one of the hardest lessons for human beings to learn. And one of the most important lessons as well.
I thought I knew all about forgiveness. All you have to do is pick out all the character flaws and shortcomings of the wrongdoer. Once accomplished, you feel so sorry for the individual with all these pathetic shortcomings you take pity and forgive them. After all, you are nothing like them so its a good thing you’ve drop kicked them out of your life. Right?! Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to work?
The old me would’ve stood up and screamed, “that’s right sister!”
Alas, the new me has become enlightened on such self serving notions. It’s challenging and freeing all at the same time. The challenge being I now have to look at every person in my life and how they mirror back to me. Whoa this is scary stuff! However, freeing because now I’m learning how to break the bonds of fear and anger which contribute to unforgiveness.
I’m learning how to avoid judging other people because what I’m really doing is judging myself.
I’ll leave you to contemplate this powerful quote from Lewis B. Smedes. I read it daily.
“ The only way to heal the pain that will not heal itself is to forgive the person who hurt you. Forgiving stops the reruns of pain. Forgiving heals your memory as you change the memory’s vision. When you release the wrongdoer from the wrong, you cut a malignant tumor out of your inner life. You set a prisoner free, but you discover that the real prisoner was yourself.”