How often have we thought ‘what a wonderful feeling it would be to ________ (fill in the blank)…’ the person who has caused us pain?
Who is it that has hurt you? Was it your dad, mom, sibling, other family member, the neighborhood or school bully, someone outside of your normal surroundings?
How deep is the wound? Were you devastated? Is the wound a gash or a paper cut? Did you think it was healed only to find out it only has a scab that you keep picking at?
Have you really tried to heal but there’s always something stuck in the back of your mind that you can’t shake it?
If you were a child and felt defenseless to the pain that was caused you and now you’re an adult you believe that you can not only defend yourself but you too can inflict some justified hurt in retaliation. Perhaps that person is in your life everyday and won’t own up to their part in your pain. Maybe they moved away or maybe they have since died and you can’t strike out against them in the manner in which you feel would give you the most satisfaction.
Don’t you just love it when someone tells you, “forget them…they’re not worth your time or energy;” or maybe, “it’s them, not you, get on with your life…” Yes, just get on with your life. But, they never tell you how. How do you get on with you life when you feel as though you have no life because of your pain? How do you stand up for yourself in a world where no one seems to really understand?
Family and friends are good to have around but we’ve got to be realistic when it comes to the influence that people have in our lives. If we are with people who are mentally or physically abusive to us or we feel powerless in an environment where others are being abused, it cannot be good to be there. Often we seek escape. Sometimes we escape by leaving and often carry guilt if we left someone behind who was vulnerable to abuse. But hey, we got out, right? Sometimes we escape with alcohol, drugs and even to others, or lifestyles that are just as damaging even if alcohol and drugs are not involved. Sometimes, some of us escape to death. We often seek love–in all the wrong places. Sometimes we seek help, most often from other people who may or may not be able to step in, provide sound advice or provide us some other form of assistance; sometimes we seek law enforcement aid, groups, or self-help guides; and then, some of us finally seek God.
Yes, God–often the last resort but the One with the most to offer. The One who gave His only begotten Son so, if we believe in Him that was innocent, who was crucified to death, overcame death and arose after three days in a glorified body and ascended to be at the right hand of the Heavenly Father until a time that the Father declares and who will return to take the believers, first the dead in Christ and second those who are alive in Christ and will live eternity in Heaven with Him. (see John 3:16)
If we sincerely seek our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus with a true and humble heart, and as the Apostle Paul may have said, trust Him with all our έντερο (gut), then we shall be forgiven of all of our sins because Jesus, (okay here’s the difficult part to wrap our minds around) Jesus, took every sin, every bad feeling, everything that could ever possibly happen to us that would keep us unholy and not able to even be looked at by God the Father, He took it all upon Himself for each and everyone of us. What?!! I know, right? So there is actually nothing that He doesn’t understand. Because, as God, He is the only One who can actually hold the weight of it all. Therefore, when we give up our pain(s) to Him, He truly understands our individual pain(s). And, by forgiving us of our sins He makes it possible for us to forgive others who have wronged us.
The two main commandments that God has given us that are most important are: Matthew 22: 37 Jesus replied, “‘You must love the lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”
Forgiveness toward others who have hurt or wronged us in some way does not come easy but often, forgiveness is not always about releasing the other person, especially when sometimes that person is not around to know that we have forgiven them. Forgiveness is really about freeing ourselves. When someone tells us to, “just forget about them…” that’s kind of hard to do if we haven’t forgiven them because the memory of the pain is still eating at us. Forgiveness is hard but so is living with the hurt and anger the eats away at our insides, our lives and the innocents around us. Be free neighbors, be free.
Psalms 56:11 (NLT)
I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?
The wounds are often deep and though some are paper cuts, #forgiveness is difficult for us. When we surrender our will to the will of our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus, forgiveness becomes familiar.
Matthew 19:26 (NLT)
Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.”
Listen, for He calls your name. “Here I am, Lord,” I respond.