It is not simple…..but it is essential!

 I had a question from a fellow soul searcher(is that a good term? IDK) anyway…..it was regarding “Forgiveness”! ***read previous post to understand question***

 

Her question: “What if you never liked the person? What if you as soon spit on them as look at them because of all the trouble they have caused.”

 

 

This is a great question. It is probably also a pretty obvious one; if you read my post on Forgiveness. So I am glad she asked.

 

Here is my answer!

 

I understand there may be people in our lives as described in the readers question. These people could be family BY LAW, or not, they could just be acquaintances. It doesn’t matter. The point is there could be people in our lives who cause us unrest; even though we never liked them nor were friends with them in the first place. OK. I get it.

 

One of my main points when writing about forgiveness, was for you to think about some redeeming qualities or characteristics that caused you to love the person in the first place. I understand this just does not apply in some cases. There are people who will come into our lives and cause nothing but unrest! They may not even give us a chance to form a relationship, good or bad. Some people may even cause trouble, leave and never be seen again, without us even knowing their name! There are some people (too many) who have been violated by others and they never know who their assailant was! They have wreaked havoc on our lives and caused us to have the “fallout” that is known as unforgiveness hanging over us, for years or even a lifetime. So, you may ask, if we never liked them or maybe never knew them……. how can we find redeeming qualities (or memories) to hang on to….. in order to help us get to forgiveness? What then is the answer?

 

I could spend a lot of time going into this subject. I could probably write a book! But I am going to try and keep to the readers question. In this case she knows the person….just never liked them. The same principles apply to the other cases…..but there is also a lot of “letting go” and more involved. Anyway…read on!

 

Below I offer you my thoughts on this subject. You may accept them or reject them. It will either resonate with you or it will not. It is your choice. And feel free to leave a comment :)

 

First of all- whether you love them or whether you dislike them, this is not a simple thing to do! Do not be hard on yourself! This takes work! You will get there….if you want to!

And as I have said before…this is essential to you living your best life! The one that God intended for you!

 

The answer? LOVE. Sounds simple? Yes, but deep too. Starting and probably ending with love…here are my thoughts one by one!

 

1. When you look at this person you need to see GOD. You need to remember that this person was created by God, with the same love that he created you. Remember “Love makes everything holy, since God is love” (1 John 4:8, 4:16). When you look at him/her you need to see God and know that God loves them. And that it is your job to love them, “And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.”(1 Peter 4:8). This may seem trite to some, or maybe to many. But it is not. It is the Word of God and in God all things are possible ( Matthew 19:26)…so I ask you, how could it not be so?

 

2. Remembering the love of our God and the way he wants you to treat others, may be the only way you can stand to be around this person. You probably should limit your time with these types of people. You really should surround yourselves with positive people. It is good for your soul. But do not deprive this person of God’s love as expressed through your living example. When with them- LOVE them…SHOW them what it means to live God’s word. By doing this you are showing God that you LOVE HIM above all else. This is why you keep His word. “That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. 35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (John 13:34-35)

 

3. Remember, forgiveness is for you. Especially in these situations. How will the person, who you do not even like much,benefit from your forgiveness? Probably not at all; at least not immediately! It is for you! This is your choice. To be right or be happy. To follow God’s word or to do it your way.

 

4. And finally, when going into any situation that you find challenging, remember that you do not go in alone! God is always by your side. Ask Him to let you feel HIS presence. Ask for HIS guidance. HE will give you the strength to stare this person in the face with eyes of Love…with God’s love. Ask HIM to help you get through it with grace, and to let HIS LOVE shine through. Also,if the situation warrants it, let HIM put the right words in your mouth. You could make a difference in someone’s life and isn’t that what we are lead to do? “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

 

I hope this has helped you to understand my point of view on the subject. Hopefully I have not rambled too much!!

Peace and Love~ Christine

Forgiveness….

A follow-up to a post where I spoke of Forgiveness.

“How to Forgive”

Recently I was asked: How do I forgive?

I had not thought before about the fact that some folks may not know where to start. A person can feel so overwhelmed with the offense that caused the need to forgive, that they just do not know where to start. How do you begin to forgive someone for things that have caused you pain, sorrow, distress, anger?

Here is my answer….of course it is MY answer :) May not be an answer for all!

1. First and foremost I think it is important to realize that the forgiveness is not for the other person. It is for YOU. Really it is. It is YOU that this is causing problems for. I am not saying the other person isn’t in turmoil due to your anger or grudge, but letting go of this anger/grudge is going to do more for your world…as far as you’re concerned. And if the byproduct is that you do a good thing for someone else along the way ( lifting their burden by forgiving them!!)  Then that is great too! ( but you have to want to….it is your choice)

2. I find that it makes things a lot easier if I can remember just one reason I liked/loved my offender in the first place. If you can remember why you loved them, hold on to it. Concentrate on that thing. Whenever the “problem” surfaces, replace it with the reason you loved in the first place. You are the only person in control of your feelings! It is possible to do this. Love is a strong emotion, use its power. If it is hard for you to remember things, get out old photos or try writing about old memories. Once you start compiling your reasons, write them down! Let us call these “reasons” your Love words!  Look at them daily. Use the Love words when you pray. Bombard your mind with all the reasons you loved this person before the problem (s) started.  Replace the anger thoughts with love thoughts. ( Of course this can only apply to people with whom you have history)  ( but you have to want to…it is your choice)

3. Ask God for the strength to remember the love. Ask God to help replace your feelings of anger with feelings of love. Pray often when the feelings of anger surface. Use your aforementioned Love words during prayers.  Pray for this person daily. Praying for someone who has angered you or wronged you opens a window just big enough for God to start working on the problem! ( but you have to want to….it is your choice)

4. Let go of your pride! It is pride that separates us from the love necessary to mend these wounds. You want to hear “you are right” or “I am sorry”. You feel letting it go is a cop-out or an admission of being wrong, an admission of guilt. What is more important? Your love and peace of mind or your being right? ( but you have to want to…..it is your choice)

It is important to fill your heart, mind and soul with feelings of love over the anger. I tell you, if you can find the love and hold on to it, fill your mind with the good things and not the offense…..these are the things that are going to lead to a healing in your relationship.

And finally, if the offender was never someone with which you shared  a love…then remember that we are all one and that they were created in love by God. So…..in essence you have a shared love. You need to remember it. At least try to hold on to that, so if you need to distance yourself, you may do so with love and not anger.

Please note that I am not trying to infuriate you with my repeat at the end of each step….“but you have to want to….it is your choice”  It is just, in my mind, the most important element of each step. Not to be over looked or forgotten. We have a choice in everything in our life.

Again…these are my feelings. They are proven, in my life, to be a successful means to forgiveness.
My hope is that it can help someone else.

Peace and Love.