Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Forgiveness

Easter weekend I received a call from a good friend, and in the spirit of Easter, she ended our telephone conversation with, "may all your sins be forgiven." I can't recall anyone ever having said that to me before and I've never known this girl to be at all religious, so initially, I was a little taken aback. However, the more I thought about it, the real message of Easter is the hope we have of experiencing the grace of forgiveness, and certainly, there is not much that is more freeing than being forgiven and being able to forgive.

Forgiveness is a lesson that took me a long time to learn, not that I didn't want to forgive, but that I didn't truly understand it. Forgiveness is not at all for the transgressor but rather the person who is doing the forgiving. Forgiveness is the act of untying oneself from the thoughts and feelings that bind us to the acts committed against us. It is a conscious decision to let go of resentment and thoughts of revenge and to move on with one's life. It is the ability to pick up our shattered self and move beyond in a quest to find that centre of peace which makes us whole again.

Forgiveness, however, does not mean that one denies or condones the wrong committed against them or others. Forgiveness also doesn't guarantee reconciliation nor does it absolve the transgressor from restitution. Reconciliation is a much larger process of which forgiveness plays but one small part. Now that last point is probably where my confusion began. At one time, I believed my forgiveness was what was needed to bridge the chasm created by the transgressor. But alas, it was the responsibility of the transgressor to rebuild that bridge. In the process, I've learned to listen to actions rather than words, as for some, sickly lies come easy, but the body always reveals its true intent.

Undoubtedly, you have now realized that the threads of another story are quietly weaving themselves within the layers written upon this page. Now is not the time for me to go into all the lurid details, however, know that the road is never smooth when one is called upon to proclaim the truth in the shadow of her tormentor. These coming days are gray and I cannot yet see beyond the bend in the road, so if you can find it within yourself to say a prayer on my behalf or throw a positive thought in my direction, I would be most appreciative.

12 comments:

The Fool said...

I'll be the first to admit that I have never been one to forgive easily...but along the way, I have learned much that concurs with your own thoughts on this subject. Forgiveness, although most often misconstrued otherwise, is more for the self, and not the other...and it is more about healing, without the requisite of forgetting. Best to you during these times, Nomad. May the turnings in the path lead you to your hearts fulfillment and dreams. You deserve no less. May a thousand prayers be generated to keep the angels busy on your behalf.

JBelle said...

May the light cast itself upon your path and the grace of letting go settle around you. don't forget--you can't really go on until you let go of what's weighing you down here....

we're doomed said...

I will say a prayer for you, Carla. Forgiving someone can be a very hard task. Good luck on this journey. Be glad you aren't forgiving yourself. Sometimes forgiving yourself is the hardest thing in the world to do.

Rowena... said...

I'm throwing a hundred positive thoughts out to you Carla!

Pamela said...

yeah.. I love that old saying (don't know who said it) about not forgiving (being bitter) is like swallowing poison and waiting for the other person to die.

I have a hard time forgiving, too. I understand the trust part has to be earned. I just have a hard time releasing that first step.

Carla said...

Fool, Thanks. Much appreciated.

JBelle, I've totally let go. No need to worry there. Thanks for the lovely thoughts.

Carla said...

We're Doomed, Thanks. I'm sure that forgiving oneself can be a very trying task. Luckily I feel very at peace with myself.

Rowena, Thank you. I very much appreciate it.

Carla said...

Pamela, Yes, I like that saying too. It's so true.

pandave said...

Such a great post - I read it and thought, I have been here too often and it is still doesn't get easier. You put it all so beautifully I just hope the fog lifts and the way forward becomes brighter.

Carla said...

Pandave, Things are looking brighter already. Thanks.

dawn said...

Forgiveness is indeed a complex subject and is most difficult when faced with a transgressor who continues on the same path. I will pray for you yet for I know the path is not easy when forgiveness is required.

Carla said...

Dawn, Thank you. I appreciate your prayers.