Raising four kids over my ‘mom’ years has taught me some interesting and valuable lessons about forgiveness. I’m still learning but I’ve realized it isn’t about the other person or the offender at all. No ~ As selfish as it sounds, It’s about the “me, myself and I”, before the Lord, in the situation, and His power and His strength in us, giving us the ability, to accept the loss or the hurt, regardless of how deep it may go! We have to get closer to God in order to forgive and accept any loss. You see beautiful soul, simple ‘acceptance’ releases the chained weight of the bitter spirit. That bitterness that binds and tugs around the ankle! Simple acceptance, like a key, clicked in the lock, sets us free of the offence! Yeah, simple, straight forward acceptance! It’s the only way! Only then can I ‘begin’ to heal in the whole healing process. It won’t be instant, it never is, but just as time heals a surgery, a wound, or a broken bone; the broken heart, the pain of offence and the hurt of loss also heals with time, if we’ve accepted the loss before our Lord who lost His life at the hands of the angry mob. What did He do? He prayed, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” They weren’t asking but He accepted His brutal treatment and ultimate loss of life on the cross and all for us, who are so undeserving! So must we ask God to forgive them and “accept” our lot and our loss? You see, when we accept the loss, it can’t get any worse so, what does it matter? It’s done! it’s over! It’s happened and we can’t change it! So we accept it and we learn from it! We forgive and we are forgiven over and over and over again in this life and each time we move on hopefully a little smarter and a little wiser in our journey!
Think of it this way! Have you ever forgiven your kids, even when they haven’t asked? When they’re young, we do don’t we? And in their child-like simplicity, they forgive us when we fail them in their little worlds, so big to their concerns. It’s all in a day’s work and just a valuable part of training in kids-world and parenting. However, as they get older with their own minds and rebellious behaviours, it becomes a little more “adult-like” difficult and chances are they’re not asking because they don’t care. So, rather than harbour it, holding it against them ~ we have to accept what they’ve done, forgive and let it go and yeah, maybe ten times a day or more and always with the knowledge of another day tomorrow with maybe more of the same scenario. Remember the offender seldom asks nor do they have the ability nor power to heal. If we depend on the offender for our healing we may take the bitterness to our grave.
Matthew 18: 21, 22
“Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times? “Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”