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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Forgiveness

So, I have been thinking a lot about forgiveness this week. Honestly, I have a real hard time with forgiveness. I don't know why. Mostly it is the 7 times 70 kind. Does this mean if the person does the same thing over and over again and again that you just have to keep forgiving that? I do know that God forgives us over and over for the same mistakes we make time and time again. But me- well that is hard. Last week when my exhusband was released from jail this overwhealming sense of anger poured out of me. This man has made the same mistakes time and time again. He has had the upperhand in my life for over 21 years. As I left home in my car that night I was consumed with anger. I wanted to do whatever possible to get back at him. I drove and I cried. I shouted and screamed. I came home and sat down at the computer. I had so much to say but no words came. Then I remember the story of the Amish people and how forgiveness came so easy to them. How at peace they were. This anger in me does no good. It has eaten at me for many years. It makes me miserable. But I can't let it go. It is too hard. Does forgiving mean forgetting? What good would it do to forgive? Just a few of the many questions that have been on my mind. These videos really do make you think.
This first one has some really powerful words.
Don't forget to pause the music.





6 comments:

Sharon said...

Sondra, I think I would have a very difficult forgiving your ex-husband too if he was in my life. Especially when it involves your sons. You are amazing how you want to give up your anger. Keep plugging away, keep praying and asking God to help you. I think it is a process that takes a long time. One day you will wake up and realize that you just don't have the anger anymore. Please don't let it eat you up or cause you to sin by holding on to it or in turn getting angry and lashing out at your loved ones. Remember to give it to God, give it to God, give it to God.

I will pray for you about this.

Love, Sharon

P.S. I did like the videos. The Amish people are amazing. That is such a sad story.

nannykim said...

The videos were good--some true thoughts included in that first one. I do think we can ask God to work the forgiveness in our hearts; we can go to him ...be honest with Him and ask Him to help our weakness. I have found that when I focus on Eph 3: "16 that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen"----When I pray this and when I see or understand more and more of His great love he works more of that love and that attitude of forgiveness in me.

I also think there is a great importance to controlling our thought life. Sometimes we tend to do a lot of what if worrying and this to is a difficult thing. If we know that someone has a pattern of doing hurtful things then we worry about when he will do it next. I guess it helps to pray diligently for the person we want to forgive. Pray for Christ's work in the individuals life. I think, really, that has been one of the biggest aids in helping me to forgive. If I am having difficulty I have found that praying for the person (and praying Eph 3 for that person) does work a transformation in my heart.

Also--like much of the first video said--it truly cripples us, hurts us, and hurts those around us when we don't forgive. ...that root of bitterness does long term damage to us and our loved ones that live with us and those we influence. It also damages God's work in and through us.

One thing I have really been seeing is what happens to the elderly when they haven't forgiven. I have been spending a lot of time in the nursing home--it really makes for a horrible individual when the unforgiveness has taken over.

My prayers are with you and thanks for the thoughtfilled post. We all need to search our own hearts in this area.

jennifer said...

Sondra, I have no real words of wisdom here. You are human and you are experiencing NORMAL human behavior. Quit beating yourself up for being normal. But DO ask God to deal with this through you. To just take it and do what HE will. Your in my Prayers, and I love you.

Jennifer, your Sister in Christ!

Julieann said...

Sondra (((It is so hard sometimes isn't it?)))) Just take it one day at a time.

Julieann

Crystal said...

I'll watch the video's in a second, but I just wanted to say that it's understandable given your situations that forgiveness can be hard. I think sometimes forgiveness doesn't look like what other people expect. Often in an abusive situation the most healing and forgiveness can only happen with separation.

I think you have God on your side in this whole situation. It's your heart He's working on through it all. You may feel close to breaking, you may feel hurt, angry and betrayed, because of what you have to deal with, but I don't think you're sinning by having those emotions. Listen to them, and listen to God, keep your actions honoring Him and in time the forgiveness part will come.

Personal hurt is always a very heavy burden, it does us no good to hold on to it, but it doesn't do us any good to sweep things under the rug either. The best will be to take it all to the Lord in prayer, to let your believing friends pray along with you, and through God's grace, may you be used to have all of this turn for the better if it is so God's will.

I will pray.
You have my love and support.
-Crystal

Crystal said...

Boo, I can't view the videos. This computer is so slow.