Don’t Rush To Forgive If The Wound Is Grave
When the hurt is very deep, don’t forgive right away.
When someone hurts you deeply, God doesn’t require that you forgive right away. When your husband commits adultery, or when an uncle molests you, or when a friend betrays you…, God doesn’t require that you drive out your feelings of anger “right now”.
Why? Because we’re not robots with push buttons on our chest.
In fact, God knows that we need to get angry for awhile as part of our healing.
By getting angry, we restore our dignity. By getting angry, we love ourselves. By getting angry, we say, “What you did to me was terribly wrong. You violated me.”
I repeat: The process of getting angry (for awhile) is part of your healing.
Anger is like a medicine with an expiration date. Before that expiration date, anger is medicine. After that expiration date, anger becomes poison.
At the right time, God will ask you to surrender your anger.
Which now brings me to our main message for today.
Goal: To Have A Forgiving Attitude
Today, my goal isn’t just to encourage you to forgive those who have wronged you in the past.
Today, my goal is much more ambitious than that.
My goal is to encourage you to develop a forgiving attitude.
Forgiveness is an isolated act. But a forgiving attitude is who you are normally, usually, regularly…
My belief? If you want to be happy in your life, you need to have a forgiving attitude.
Because you live amidst imperfect people.
You were born into an imperfect family, with imperfect parents, with imperfect siblings.
Announcement: You’re imperfect too! (Unless you happen to be a perfect alien from a perfect planet.)
Everyday, you’ll get hurt. Someone will step on your toe. Someone will stab your back. Someone will kick your behind. Someone will prick your pride. Someone will slander your name.
That’s why Jesus said, Forgive seventy times seven. (Matthew 18:21-22) That number is a Biblical symbol for “forever”.
Believe me, if you don’t have a forgiving attitude, you can’t enjoy any imperfect relationship.
Do You Have An Unforgiving Attitude?
Here’s what I know. A person who has an unforgiving attitude is an unhappy person.
For example, when a waiter brings the wrong order, does it ruin your entire day?
When a cashier makes a mistake, because she’s new, or she’s nervous, or she’s having her own family problems—Do you roll up your eyeballs and sigh a sigh of exasperation?
When a sister borrows your blouse without your permission and doesn’t return it washed and folded, do you fume for the rest of the day?
When a friend forgets to say “thank you” for her birthday gift, do you nurse a grudge until your next birthday?
Here’s the crazy thing about unforgiveness. You can be moping and grumbling at home, while the person you’re angry with could be sunbathing in Boracay.
Face it. Unforgiveness isn’t very wise.
(To continue reading Bo’s inspiring article, click here.)