the action or process of forgiving or being forgiven
"This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins."
~ Matthew 26:28
We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
"Do to others as you would have them do to you." ~ Luke 6:31
We made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
"Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift." ~ Matthew 5:23-24
Ah, forgiveness... quite possibly one of the hardest (and sometimes disliked) words in the English language, and maybe even in other languages as well. Why is that? Why is it so difficult for us to acknowledge that we are wrong, why do we often times seem to let our pride get the best of us? Do we realize that when we don't forgive we are choking the life out of ourselves... we're choosing to live a life grumpy and dissatisfied (even if we won't admit it).
I've been on this journey towards forgiveness for about 8 1/2 months now, and before that it took me a whole year to even acknowledge I needed to begin the journey. It's hard, to admit when you are wrong, to realize that in the midst of losing something (or someone) in your life, you find that you have some faults/character defects that played a role is hard. For a type A, slight OCD personality such as myself, I hate messing up. I hate being wrong, and I most definitely hate making mistakes. But alas, I've discovered that I am not perfect, nor will I ever be... at least not on this side of Heaven. Is God perfecting me? Yes, I do believe that. Am I learning from my mistakes, from my past? I sure hope so.
Here's what I'm trying to get at. Eventually you will grow tired of living a life with an unforgiving heart. And I'm not saying the whole heart is unforgiving, but if you walk with any unforgiveness towards another, there's a place in your heart that is not willing to forgive. I'll be the first to admit that I have it, and I pray each day that there will come a point in time where I can walk out forgiveness towards a certain situation. But for right now, my first step is admitting to God (and you, my readers) that out of a sense of needing to protect myself I find it very difficult to forgive at this point in time. I realize it is choking the life out of me, I feel it everyday and I fear it towards my future... but all I can do right now is trust that there will come a day when my heart changes and forgiveness for this situation doesn't seem so hard.
I will say this, in the last few weeks I've had other situations that I had been holding onto anger and resentment and finally just got tired of it. I got tired of carrying that burden and having such a dark spot in my heart... it wasn't worth the pain that I was holding onto. Another point about all this is that you forgiving another doesn't require a conversation with that person... but what it does require is a conversation with God and absolute sincerity. Trust me when I say he hears ya, he knows your pain and he wants to fix it... you just have to let him. God and I have had several knock down, drag out fights over the last 20 months and I believe and hope that I am coming to a place of peace and forgiveness towards him.
As I close I leave you with one question... Are you willing?
"Examine yourself and see if you have forgotten how to be sorry."
~ Oswald Chambers