I’m sitting on a comfortable bed in a hotel in Atlanta
After an afternoon of talks and interactions at a Leadership Conference
For women in the Presbyterian Church of America.
We have been inspired as we listened.
Then we talk and wonder what GOD could do at our church
Among our women.
The dream is beginning to take shape in tiny glimmers.
But as we think and discuss, we realize one thing.
In order to move forward, we need to forget the offenses
We have against others from past hurts.
There has been a lot of pain at our church over the past few years.
There are still wounds that haven’t healed.
Part of the healing will need to take place as the hurts are left with Jesus.
It sounds almost trite doesn’t it?
Just leave it with Jesus. stop
And we snarl back, “NO! I have nursed this baby too long!
I’m hanging onto it just a little longer.”
Yes, we can choose to do that.
But no matter who we are, no matter where we are struggling.
Holding onto grudges, unforgiven hurts and resentments…
Soon it becomes a load too big to carry.
Of course, we will remember the events.
But it is our choice whether we remember them with resentment,
Continually bringing them up to examine them and rehearse them over and over.
Or choose to forgive the wrongs done to us.
We have a choice…to be life givers or life takers.
Such wise words, Martha. May we each become life givers as we choose to overlook the offense. I believe Scripture tells us there is glory in so doing. Grateful to have stopped here this morning. Blessings!
With only one word to work from, I wasn’t able to include all that goes with forgetting. Often it involves repenting of my desire to hold onto my resentment, going back to my memories of that offense and nursing it instead of leaving it behind and choosing not to go back there once i have forgiven the person, and a whole host of other aspects that are included in “forgetting.”
the terms life giving and life taking have been used so much this past weekend at the conference we attended. they are so helpful when it comes to words and actions:)
Wise words! Letting go of resentment can be hard but it’s so important to forgive and move on. Praying that your church is able to do this.
thanks carly. much progress has been made for sure. but there is always room to grow in this area isn’t there? the pain of schisms in a church leave lasting scars. many are healing. we continue to pray for GOD’s mercy to bring about more healing.
Letting go of resentment is often as painful as the hurt that caused it carly:( “letting it go” can often be akin to saying goodbye to a close friend or at least someone with whom you have a love-hate relationship. they have been with you a long time. they know you well. you have a long history together. they will leave an empty place in your heart that you aren’t sure you will be able to fill. granted, the thinking isn’t all healthy thinking…
another way this nurse thinks of it is an area of infection that needs to heal in a healthy way. large infected areas in incisions, if they heal wrong don’t really heal! if not allowed to heal from the inside out so the goop can drain, it will be trapped inside while the outer layer of skin heals. it looks healed, but it really isn’t. underneath, there is an infection that is getting larger and can even threaten the life of the patient if it gets septic and goes systemic. often it can happen quite rapidly!
then the apparently healed area is cut open, all of it is drained and left open to gradually heal from the inside out! often the size of the wound is shocking! it is an amazing picture of the damage unforgiveness does to our souls and the work and time it takes to forgive. it is not something that happens overnight because the pain of many of the wounds isn’t simple. wounds from abuse, repeated offenses, etc. these often cause pain at multiple levels of our souls and spirits.
yes, we need the supernatural intervention of GOD to be able to forgive…or even want to! but we often have to go to places we have no desire to go in order to work out the process of forgiveness. it is painful often. but the grace of GOD is even bigger and grander than our pain. and the freedom and health that comes from going through this process is stunning!
Yes life givers or life takers. I would much rather be a life giver. I’m over in the #12 spot this week.
that is a term we have been hearing a lot this weekend tara. i love it, especially when referring to women and the way they relate to each other. it keeps us from getting legalistic about our words and actions. we just need to think about whether our words are life-giving or life-taking. usually it is quite clear isn’t it?
me too tara:) this is weird. i know i saw your comment while i was at the conference, but i guess i didn’t get a reply sent:( whoops!
Isn’t God kind in the fact that He WILL take the hurts from us, carry them for us, allow us to forget and move forward? Praise Him!
yes stacy. He heals the hurts and forgives. Learning to forget the offenses against us helps in our healing as well.
yes, often we need to do the difficult work of forgiving which is often a process, but that is so true Stacy:) thanks for stopping by. i missed a few comments here for some reason while i was at a conference last week.