Raising four kids over my many ‘mom’ years has taught me some interesting and valuable lessons about forgiveness. I’m still learning lots on the subject, 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! You see, beautiful one, We have to get closer to God in order to forgive and accept any loss graciously. Simple ‘acceptance’ releases the chained weight of bitterness that binds and tugs around the ankle! Simple acceptance of whatever it is that’s gone down, is like a key clicked in the lock that sets us free of the offense! Yeah, simple, straight forward acceptance! It’s the only way! Only in acceptance of the loss, can I ever ‘begin’ to heal in the whole healing process. Let me tell you ~ 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 offense 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 must 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 days work and just a valuable part of training in kids-world and parenting. However, as they get older with their own minds and rebellious behaviors, it becomes a little more “adult like” difficult and chances are they’re not asking because they don’t care. So, rather than harbor it, holding it against them for the rest of their life, ~ we have to accept what they’ve done, forgive and let it go, or we’ll be the losers really. Yeah, sadly maybe ten times a day or more and always with the knowledge of another day tomorrow with most likely more of the same scenario. Remember the offender seldom asks nor do they have the ability nor power to heal and 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.”