30 Days of Truth – Something You Have To Forgive Someone For
My husband likes to say that to forgive is divine.
I’m not exactly sure that he and I have the same definition of the word divine. When he throws that quote at you, he is usually suggesting that you quit being an asshole and let something go because it’s the right thing to do, whether someone deserves to be forgiven or not. I, however, like to remind him that the last divine human being ended up nailed to a cross – proof positive that divinity is not a job I want to apply for. I aim for “Christ like” as opposed to “actual divinity”.
My point is really just that Jared’s argument for forgiveness is flawed, but I happen to agree with his desired outcome. Forgiveness is a good thing to give. Better even than gift cards.
However, unlike gift cards, forgiveness needs to be asked for before it is given.
You come to me and apologize? Done. Forgiven. I am a little like God in that way. Granted, I may not invite you into my house afterwards, but again – Jesus and I have vastly different pain thresholds. I’m OK with that.
Because of my “ask and ye shall receive” policy about forgiveness, there isn’t anything I feel like I “have to forgive someone for”. I’ve never denied anyone forgiveness, even if they were a major asshole in public and asked for forgiveness in private (because isn’t that always the way it goes?).
There are a few things I would like to forgive someone for… if only they would ask.
I’d like to forgive my ex-stepfather for the physical and mental abuse he subjected me and my mother to when I was a kid.
I’d like to forgive the friend who betrayed my trust and violated my family in the process.
I’d like to forgive the strangers who sat behind a screen and delighted in coming up with ways to hurt a woman they barely knew.
I’d like to be able to forgive them not because I long for their inner peace, but because I want them to acknowledge that what they did was wrong. I want vindication. I want the pain they inflicted to be validated and for them to face the consequences of their actions, even if that just means facing the darkness in themselves.
I want them to feel regret.
And then I want to know the closure that comes from being able to offer forgiveness after an apology.
I think it’s safe to say that no one will be building churches in my honor any time soon.