Have you ever been spitefully treated by someone you did no wrong? Has your child ever non-challantly disobeyed your instructions which were given for his own good? Has your spouse ever cheated on you? Has your close friend, whom you so much trusted, sold you out for a penny?
The best and the most effective remedy for the above is FORGIVENESS. What then is forgiveness? Forgiveness is the act of refusing to punish someone or yourself for a committed offence. Here, an offence is committed (by the offender) which needs to be punished (by the offended), but the offended chooses to spare the offender the punishment.
Does it mean we shouldn't get angry whenever we are offended? Emphatically, no. In fact, it is human and natural to be angry and even the Bible acknowledges that ( Ephesians 4:26). We are admonished to deal with our anger right away and not let the sun go down on our anger. I then ask, what other better way can we stop our anger from lingering on till the sun goes down if not by
forgiving the person who offended us and letting all by-gone be by-gone? It is of utmost importance that we forgive those who offended us even before they gather the courage to ask us for forgiveness. You know why? Forgiveness benefits you more than your offender. See the reasons:
* Revenge reduces your self worth and puts you on
the same level as your offender. (whom you
claim to abhor).
* Forgiveness improves your health and enables you
to hold your peace which your offender wanted to
steal away from you.
* Your ability to forgive makes you a true child of a
It should be noted that forgiving your offender doesn't mean you can't give them a space.
Here is how to forgive:
1. Who offended you? Identify one person who offended you. Let us take your spouse for instance.
2. Sincerely and critically analyse your feelings. What caused your one time faithful spouse to become unfaithful overnight? Did you in any way contribute to your spouse's infidelity, I mean, where did you go wrong? Are you truly faithful to your spouse even though you haven't been caught red-handed? Are you not overreacting? Does your spouse deserve a second chance? And I tell you, your spouse and of course all of us deserve a second chance.
3. It is time to forgive. It is time to release the grudges you hold against your offender. Oh yes, separate the offence from the offender; throw away the chaff and take back the grain. Remember you are doing this mostly for yourself, and so, let all by-gone be by-gone. The best revenge is forgiveness, happiness, success for by so doing you refuse your offender any dominion over your peace of mind.
Lessons to learn
Of course there is always a lesson to learn from every disappointment.
You learn from a friend who exposed your secrets to others that such a friend is not trust worthy. So, next time, don't share your secrets with such friend.
You learn from a disobedient child that you shouldn't just give instructions but also follow them up, and convincingly let the child see reasons with you.
You learn from an unfaithful spouse that may be you are not doing enough; you need to be more caring, loving and attentive.
Forgiveness is an anger-neutralizer which saves you the stress of revenge, gives you more joy and peace. It helps you keep negativities behind you and move forward. It gives you freedom and most importantly makes you a worthy child of a Merciful God.