Forgiveness, can you imagine?

If anyone asks me what my faith is based on, I’d tell them: the love and forgiveness of my heavenly father who has set me free.

Forgiveness. Thats what we receive from Christ. The ultimate forgiveness, setting us free to be and free from so much. Forgiveness that is ours to have and hold, to make us better people.

I don’t understand forgiveness yet. I’m a little bit closer to understanding today than I was last week though. I’ve made a huge step since one of my best friends challenged me, asking “have you forgiven him yet?”.

You see, I thought I’d moved past the hurt of breaking up with the guy I thought I’d spend the rest of my life with. I thought I was good. For the first time in nearly a year, I reached out to him. I thought it would be okay. It wasn’t. I realised that he wasn’t hurting how I thought he was. He’d moved on and had been moved on for a long time. A spiral started and the next 12 hours were a write off.

During that time was when I was asked if I had forgiven him. I hadn’t. I haven’t got all the way there now. Until last week I believed that forgiveness was for the other person only. Until last week I thought that to forgiveness was letting the other person off the hook. Believe it or not, google taught me otherwise.

According to google, “Forgiveness is the intentional and voluntary process by which a victim undergoes a change in feelings and attitude regarding an offense, lets go of negative emotions such as vengefulness, with an increased ability to wish the offender well.”

What struck me about this definition is that it focuses on the impact on the ‘victim’ rather than the ‘offender’. Thats a totally new way of looking at it for me. Remembering that forgiveness is for me, rather than the other person has transformed the way I think. I’ve always been bad at letting things go but by the grace of God I’ve been able to begin to learn it this week.

I’m not going to claim to understand God in any way shape or form but thanks to a very good friend I’ve been able to follow Jesus more truly by learning to forgive. What better way to bless others while increasing my own blessing from God?

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