Twenty-six years ago my brother in law, one of my closest friends was murdered by a young man who was involved in drugs and the occult. Forgiveness is a personal journey for me. Here are some things that I have learned about forgiveness:
1. Forgiveness is an event. There was a time that I distinctly choosing to forgive and made the commitment.
2. Forgiveness is a process. I can become better at forgiving the more that I do it.
3. Forgiveness is a decision. I have to commit to the event and the process.
4. Forgiveness means dealing with anger. I learned to express anger proactively through journaling and talking it out with God and others.
5. Forgiveness is a gift to myself. It gives me freedom from having to be involved in any way with the person or event that caused hurt.
6. Forgiveness and trust should not be confused. Just because I forgive doesn’t mean I have to trust the person who hurt me. Forgiveness is given, trust is built.
7. Forgiveness is trusting God. I don’t have to worry about retribution for God in His timing will do a much better job at this.
8. Forgiveness gives me a new perspective. It helps me to empathize with the person who has caused me hurt.
9. Forgiveness gives me peace. I don’t have to relive traumatic events over and over.
10. Forgiveness allows me to focus. I can focus on what God is doing in my life now and what He is calling me to do in the future.
Forgiveness is needed in relationships. Traumatic events that call for forgiveness teach me how to apply lessons to move relationships in healthy directions.
Thoughts to ponder:
Who do I have a hard time forgiving?
How am I applying myself to get better at forgiveness?
What lessons am I learning about?
Ephesians 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace