Forgiveness can be such a vague notion. We know that it is the all-encompassing concept of a life of faith and it is the foundation of every believer in Christ. We are admonished Biblically to forgive those who sin against us lest our Heavenly Father does not forgive us of our sins.
“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-14 and this admonishment in and of itself is enough to take forgiveness very seriously.
We are also told to forgive repeatedly, over and over again as people will fail us time and time again. “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times. “Matt 18:22, that’s a pretty hefty number. I know that forgiveness is one of the key elements of a happy, healthy, successful marriage but at times it is so hard to wrap my mind around what exactly this idea encompasses. I know that we choose to extend forgiveness for a hurt done towards us, I know that often we don’t feel like forgiving but we do it anyway to free ourselves from the imprisonment that unforgiveness can cause, and I know that often our feelings will not line up immediately with the act of forgiveness but in time the pain will lessen. I know that by extending forgiveness we do not forget what was done for if that was the case there would be no need for it. Forgiveness is grace based, the person doesn’t deserve it, yet we offer it freely in spite of whether or not they earn it. I know that it is something that I must practice consciously and consistently in my marriage and in my life because I know that Christ has given me the greatest gift known to mankind in his sacrificial death and resurrection at Calvary where he took all my stuff, hung it on a tree, and then sent it screaming back into the dark abyss from which it came from. So I know all this, of course I do, but why is it still so hard sometimes to get to that place of genuine forgiveness where the hurts, the shames, and the deep daggers of life are no longer flung back at the person in times of heated arguments or painful conversations? I’m getting there. In my marriage we have one major problem, no, it’s not raising the kids, or money, or personality traits, or anything marriage threatening like infidelity or addictions that drive us crazy, it is this one problem, that comes up repeatedly, almost without fail whenever we have a disagreement. Almost 2 years into being together, I am walking through the fire as I learn the humble act of true forgiveness as I learn to let this go. I say I because my husband’s unpretentious spirit understands this concept much better than my “Me do it” attitude does. You see, I have needed to lay my “Me do it” attitude down at the cross of Calvary over and over and over again as Christ is teaching me, “No, ME do it, for I am the Way and the Truth and the Life” and THE only way to truly experience genuine forgiveness.
Just keep livin!!