We can have a hard time forgiving people and realizing that we are holding onto the hurt and anger that they caused us.
When we hold onto this, we are causing more bitterness and anger in ourselves so that we can’t trust other people.
Through this Devotional on The Bible Plan App called Psychology Forgiveness, I’ve learned a few things that I want to share.
“Forgiveness does not excuse the offending behavior. Forgiveness excuses the offender”. The behavior was not ok and not acceptable, but we let go to say I’m pot long allowing this to have a hold on me. I’m trusting that either this person will change or that I can make the change in myself.
I have a hard time trusting people. Some of it comes from wanting control and yet other times it is because of the hurt/things that others have done. This causes me to have more anxiety and worry about what others will do or won’t do then just seeing what will happen. There is so much out of our control and a lot of this has to do with others and the environment around us. I know we’ve all seen the posters of what we can and can’t control and it is so true. I can only control myself, my emotions, and behaviors; I can’t control how others react or what they do.
“When we forgive, we are saying to that person, you are bigger and better than what you did against me. I choose to see you over that action” (quote from devotional).
Are you seeing past that person’s action or only that action? We must realize that the more we sit in that memory of that action the harder it is to let it go and truly see that person as a person who needs forgiveness.
When we can’t forgive, we are wanting to hold onto the memory so that we can see it and learn from it. Yet that’s not how this works. We already have learned from it but when we don’t forgive, we aren’t truly letting our heart be free from any hurt/anger. It is always easier to hold onto the hurt/anger than it is to let it go. Yet when we let it go, we are more at peace and feel better.
This devotional had some great practical’s for when the memories of the hurt are still there:
- Don’t be hard on yourself. The brain is functioning as normal and the command to forgive is abnormal.
- Be graceful, kind, and compassionate. Ephesians 4:32
- Be merciful. Mercy is the withholding of the punishment that someone deserves.
- Where possible and safe, make new positive memories
We can think we have to make new positive memories with that person but sometimes it comes down to making new memories with someone else to overcome the bad.
Trust that others won’t hurt you like the other people did. Trust that you will have all and continue to have all that is needed. Trust that when you let go that even if those people don’t know about it you can be a change in their life or someone else’s for not holding onto the anger/hurt.
We all need forgiveness and when we can’t forgive others it can be hard enough to forgive ourselves and see that others will forgive us for our mistakes.