The Art of Forgiving

Forgiving someone is only really easy if your emotions were not shredded or if you barely if at all trusted that person. If they were trusted or loved or were supposed to be trustworthy or love you, it can get complicated. Feelings were hurt, trust broken, lies were always involved, etc. This forgiving we must do (because God requires it of us) becomes more of an art.

I have learned this art of forgiving, forged after many disappointments in people I trusted, betrayals, losses, etc. Here it is… God has to help us. Seems simple? Too simple, like I am an idiot for saying so? On the contrary, pride is the real obstacle to forgiveness. Remembering humbly how many sins God forgave me for helps me forgive others, even the closest people to me. I can forgive someone who did anything to me because I have been forgiven of so many wrongs myself. And also, God assures us that we will be forgiven as we forgive others. That is pretty strong motivation. Realizing we are not perfect allows people to sin/make mistakes/hurt us. God says it is really God they are sinning against and He will repay them. But we are supposed to forgive and God will help when we call on Him. Then forgiveness frees you of the burden of carrying it around and reliving the pain over and over, giving you life and vitality as a reward. Forgiveness is an art and we need the Master Artist’s help to make it.❤

Forgiving is the Key to Being Forgiven

Jesus’ words in Matthew 6 were very clear. As we forgive others, we will be forgiven. So if we harbor unforgiveness, we put ourselves in harm’s way and put ourselves in bondage to our own sins. Pride is the culprit, yet again. Ego says they don’t deserve forgiveness. Even if that is true, when you make that judgment, you doom yourself to not bring forgiven by God, so they win twice- one by the offense and once by your pride keeping you from forgiving them. So forgive and they only hurt you once, you are forgiven your sins, and God will deal with them later. “Vengeance is mine, says the Lord, I will repay.” Trust that and forgive. Let it go and you will have obeyed God, which brings blessings. It is freeing and feels great when you dump that baggage. And then you can be forgiven and closer to the Lord. Beautiful!😄❤

Spouse or Family of Addicts Yields a Forgiveness Expert

One big thing about living with an addict, whether you are married to one or there is one or more in your family, you become a forgiveness expert. Now, this isn’t automatic. It took me a while to

1. be humble enough to admit that I was not perfect (when you see someone every day in addiction(s), you tend to compare and feel pretty holy and it takes maturity of humility to admit to not being perfect and thus forgiving. (It helped me a lot with this when a pastor said “Our comparison should never be against other people who are also flawed but against Jesus who is perfect, then we see the need for His grace”) and

2. Be mature enough to know that God will forgive my sins as I forgive those who sin against me and

3. Trust God enough to have control of the situation and yield my control of it,

4. Find comfort and strength in a strong relationship with God, and lastly

5. Realize that forgiveness does not mean enabling as long as they know where we stand and we maintain healthy boundaries (forgiveness is the earthly manifestation of grace which frees rather than enables – they carry obscene amounts of guilt continually and this frees them of more).

All these things needed to be in place for forgiveness to come easy to me. When you decide to stay with the addict, you decide to purposely stay with someone who has chosen to feed their own selfishness and narcissism based on lies and escapism over any real love for you. They decide to be Willoughby from Sense and Sensibility. They do love you in their way “but not enough” because of this sin sickness, this self-inflicted denial and escapism (escaping from pain or discomfort or trauma and God). It is humbling and to survive relying on God is paramount to success.

Know that it is always God’s desire to draw everyone close to Himself and so He rewards those who stay with those running from Him and who keep showing His love. He wants them back and appreciated you standing in the gap through prayer, Bible study and loving example of grace and forgiveness.

So we have the extra blessing of opportunities to forgive. As such, we are in a very good position to be rewarded richly by God and also to be able to help other people in the same position or less experienced at it. Anyway, God bless us, everyone. Much love to you on your journey. 😄❤

The Precious Pain Box

Hanging on to a deep hurt from our past is like clenching a secret box of pain or bad choices or addiction that we have made a treasure of. We protect it. We keep it. We, like Gallum of the Lord of the Rings book series by J. R. Tolkien, call it “my precious” and would die to keep it and protect it.

Meanwhile, this protected box, though feeling familiar and safe and only ours, is killing us softly, keeping us bondage to it. We think we are holding our box but that box is holding us.

How do you feel safe enough to let it go? Only one way. We have to choose to do so. We have to humbly want to put the box down. As soon as we want Him to, God will take it from you. And He is with you along the way trying to get your attention to let you know life is better without that evil box we have been treasuring. Forgiveness is release of the pain and hurt in full pardon- you choose to forgive. Prayer is a powerful tool to help get you there. Love is too.

Let me encourage you by saying how freeing and light is to put the bad box treasure down. You feel as though you can fly without it. It is beautiful! And God is so very good!😄❤

Tensions High & Humble Pie

Back to my humble I run. Tensions around here are high with my husband’s tv on the fritz. I am listening to music to pass time before bed and he is annoyed and passive aggressively hates every son I pick. I have to like all his weird songs that are rock songs with jazz timing that never settle well, but my songs are all garbage, not to be tolerated. And this is the tense life and I am fasting tomorrow (prayers to follow on another post).

So, I take a deep breath in ad hold it for a second or two and let it out in a controlled fashion and step off my reared up pride once again. It is not my concern that he keeps his pride up. No, my business is in myself being humble before the Lord and as an extention, being humble before him. I turn the music off, pray and read my Bible.

Is this a cop out, a “crutch”? I don’t care about that except to disdain the pride teeming in that question. I only care that I need to correct me and my pride to soften the room. So I do. And all is well.

We are too quick to proudly defend our honor when humble forgiveness and grace serve everyone much better.😄❤