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Learning to forgive.

Posted by Allison on October 14, 2009

I haven’t been blogging as much becuase I’m deep in thought. (Plus I’m lazy and by the time I sit down to blog my brilliant witty things to say turn into a laundry list of stuff so boring that even I don’t want to read about as I edit my post). I’ve been thinking a lot about forgiveness lately.  I know it’s my weak point.  I’m not very good or even sort of good at forgiveness.  I’m still pissed about something that happened in 1985.  In high school.  So I get that I’m not the most reasonable person when it comes to forgiving people situations in which I get hurt.  But I don’t understand the whole “it’s forgiving for yourself” thing.  If I’m angry about something forgiveness feels like absolution.  Every part of me believes that if I forgive the offending party will just re offend.  I’ve seen television programs or in-depth 60 minutes type shows where someone will go to the jail where there loved ones killer is and have this session in forgiveness with them.  In THEORY I think that it must be a very healing thing for the family member.  I get that the anger that you carry for someone’s actions can manifest itself in such a negative way in your life.  But take away the ‘in theory’ and that’s where it all goes to hell in a hand basket for me.  The more I try to forgive the angrier I get which I don’t think is suppose to be the point.  I read the book “The Shack” and so completely didn’t get it that I thought perhaps I had a bit of a brain injury.  The only part that made sense to me in the whole book was the idea that you don’t have to forget to forgive.  Cause I remember shit that most people don’t…especially things that hurt.

How do people forgive the unforgivable?  Why do people forgive the unforgivable?  What if the person that has hurt you is a person you never thought would?  What if even if every part of your being wants to forgive you have neither the tools or the traits to do so.

Meh. Clearly all the thinking on forgiveness has not got me any closer to actually forgiving.

6 Responses to “Learning to forgive.”

  1. Kristinma said

    Allie-san! I hated that book for almost exactly the same reason you’re describing here. I loathed that book. I bought it in an airport bookstore and now, I can’t get over it and refuse to buy books in airports. You get my point.

    I don’t forgive and I don’t forget. But I often choose to “let it go” and not let crap manifest itself too negatively in me because I’m not someone who wants to give away that “power” … of course right now with this crap going on with Ron I completely withhold any sense of what I just said — I’m not forgiving, forgetting and everything is just BAD and negative right now. That’s point two.

    Point three is — you’re okay and we’re still sisters. Obviously.
    Get my room ready ~ 😉

  2. Allison said

    I’m so glad you get what I mean about the Shack! I bought it at the train station here and although they have a limited English section they had this book. I had heard sooo much about it, I really wanted to read it. Probably a fate thing though because little did I know that I was going to be put to the forgiveness test so quickly after reading it.

  3. anji said

    hello my friend, i got your email but never managed to write you back… things have been crazy busy hectic. I found you using yahoo messenger one day, your blog popped up, and I was sooooo excited 🙂

    my two blogs are http://www.danglingconversation.com and http://www.my-basic-training.com... i’m gonna join the army, haha…

    it actually happened/occured to me after two serious incidents. The first was when two students on my second week of teaching brought a gun/machete to class… my teaching career lasted all of four months. I quit at easter.
    the second was when Martin and I separated, after being together 6 years. He’s in the army, suffers from PTSD and… we just couldn’t do it anymore.

    I decided to start living life, stop holding onto the past… and living for the present and the future.

    I weighed 263 pounds in early May, I’m now at 225… and on my way down another 40 pounds very soon and hoping to become a photojournalist in the army, early in 2010.

    The reason I write this is… Forgiveness.

    Screw forgiveness. I’m going to tell you, it’s not our place to “forgive”. that’s God’s place (or whoever you believe in). I have spent so much of my life beating myself down because of guilt or being ‘wronged’ by others… but in the past 7 months, I’ve had to move on from the gun/machete incident and separating from Martin. Neither have been pleasant. Both involve ‘forgiveness’ but – I decided it’s not my place to forgive. It’s my place to move on… and to stop allowing my life to be faulted/ruined/messed up because of someone else’s actions.

    I continue to be responsible for my own actions. I ask for forgiveness when it’s necessary. I don’t dwell on waiting for it… it either comes or it doesn’t.

    I refuse to live a life of regrets. That’s my new way of living. I’ve wasted so much time/energy on the unimportant stuff… that I’ve failed to put it to good use on the important things… friends, family… MYSELF.

    A life without regrets.

    Are you on MSN? Yahoo? Skype? If so, let me know! We can chat sometime if you like… und, ich sprechen sie Deutsche eine klein, practise makes perfect, haha!

  4. anji said

    …and in response to your entry about being an interracial couple, just found this on the news….

    http://news.ca.msn.com/top-stories/msnbc-article.aspx?cp-documentid=22290181

  5. Becca said

    That’s so interesting we both have this on our minds! Great post.

  6. Michelle said

    Aaaah, Allison I am sending you hugs across the miles. Anji has it right, it is not up to you to clear the other person’s sin, that is God’s job. Remember Johnny Sr. used to always say, “They don’t have a heaven or a hell to send you to.” Our responsibility is to not carry the toxin around and let it pollute our lives. Of course there is a chance that the person will do it again, but that is THEIR problem not YOURS!

    While they are going on living their lives probably with no clue of how they have wronged you, you may be allowing their actions to change your life. Chances are they haven’t given it a second thought yet every time you relive the occurance it is as if the sin is being committed over and over again. I think it has a lot to do with power and letting someone else have power in your life when they have absolutely no right to it.

    Also, we are never told in scripture to forget a person’s sin. I believe this is because it is an indication of their nature and we would be idiot’s to think someone is going to change their nature overnight. You don’t let the guy who ripped off the little old lady down the road be the treasurer of your community league. That goes 2 ways cause while they may have reformed their behaviour, putting them in a situation where they can’t handle the temptation is not fair to them or you.

    Wow, preaching much? Just want to take all your pain away, the mother in me you know.

    Love you!

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