Thursday, May 9, 2024

Dear Friends,

I am thankful today for the power of forgiveness.

The truth is, hurt people hurt people.  This doesn’t give them “a pass to be an ass”, but it is indicative about their state of being.  The things people say to you and/or about you in reality reveals everything about them.  

Withholding forgiveness, even when we are justified, is so much harder on you in the long run than choosing into genuine forgiveness.  When you hold onto the pain and anger you choose into playing the victim. Not forgiving equals blaming, self-justifying, self-pity, anger, bitterness and resentment.  When we land in these negative emotions, it dramatically lowers our vibe and we unwittingly give our power away, even if we are right. 

Have you ever held onto your anger for being mistreated, and been trapped in the reoccurring thoughts of the abuse playing over and over in your mind? Being hurt so deeply is bad enough, but when you hold onto the anger and refuse forgiveness, you continue to experience the trauma in your mind, allowing the abuser to mentally torment you again and again.  Forgiving doesn’t set the perpetrator free, it sets you free.  Forgiving is critical to healing and it is essential to access the Savior’s grace.

Lynn Robbins has a talk, “Be 100 percent responsible” which is the very best sermon on forgiveness I’ve ever come across.  He relates that understanding what forgiveness is not can really help us comprehend what forgiveness actually is:

  • Forgiveness is not excusing or condoning cruelty.
  • Forgiveness does not mean forgetting.
  • Forgiveness does not mean justice is denied.
  • Forgiveness does not erase the injury caused
  • Forgiveness does not mean trusting or giving another chance to abuse.  Forgiving is a commandment, but trust has to be earned.
  • Forgiving does not mean forgiveness of sins- only Christ can do that based on sincere repentance.

Forgiveness does mean:

  • Forgiving the foolishness and stupidity of succumbing to the impulses of the natural man.
  • Hoping he/she will soften their heart and yield to the enticings of the spirit.
  • Giving him/her another chance at the plan of salvation.
  • Recognizing the abuser has inflicted far more eternal damage on him/herself than temporal damage on you. They are to be pitied for the precarious situation they are in, sinking in spiritual quicksand.
  • Hoping he/she will repent before it is too late
  • Praying for the one who has wronged you.

Humans are messy and the hurt we inflict upon each other is real.  Forgiveness allows the atonement to begin to heal the wounds and ease the pain. Forgiveness is a powerful balm that allows us to stand tall in our power again- to believe in our belovedness and and own our greatness.

I am sending love to all the hearts that are hurting.  I challenge you to think of one person in your life to forgive, and execute the power of forgiveness today.  I am so thankful for the ability of forgiveness to heal and empower after an abuse.