The Art of Forgiving

Reading “The Art of Forgiving” by Lewis B. Smedes. Here are a few things I’d like to share from what I’ve read.

“It takes one person to forgive.
It takes two to be reunited.

Forgiving happens inside the wounded person.
Reunion happens in a relationship between two people.

We can forgive a person who never says he is sorry.
We cannot be truly reconciled unless he is honestly sorry.

We can forgive even if we do not trust the person who wronged us once to not wrong us again.
Reunion can happen only if we can trust the person who wronged us once not to wrong us again.

Forgiving has no strings attached.
Reunion has several strings attached.

If my life as well as yours we have wronged and have been wronged. We have offended and we have been offended but pity the person who cannot forgive. When you don’t forgive, you injure yourself because within, you are re-living and re-experiencing that pain over and over again. When you see them or hear about them, something within you churns. Something stirs within you and disrupts your peace. You don’t want to talk about them, you don’t want to acknowledge them, and you don’t want a thing to do with them. The pain is real, no one is denying that, but when will you release yourself from the pain of what happened? When will you enjoy your life or will you lead a bitter one? You can’t change what happened but you can change you.

Some very devastating things have happened in my life from childhood until a decade ago when I decided to put a stop to it. From molestation, rape, verbal and physical abuse, abandonment, rejection, and much more, I made a conscious decision to LET IT GO!!! The life I live now in Christ far outweighs the things the enemy has used people to do to me. I laugh, love, and live abundantly because I found a place in God called REST!! I have released my past and the nightmares of it and have moved on. I can pray for those who wounded me and MEAN IT. I can smile and embrace them when I see them and MEAN IT because God delivered me from BITTERNESS.

People often comment on how inspirational and encouraging I am and I have to credit my God. He removed the pain, the guilt, and the stain of yesterday and He has allowed me to enjoy my life to the fullest. I can encourage you because I am encouraged. I can make you laugh because I laugh. I can inspire you because I am inspired. What you see in my character is the fruit of who I am and I think we all need to do ourselves a favor and learn to forgive those who have trespassed against us as we expect God to forgive us for trespassing against Him.

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