Freedom of Forgiveness

I saw this post on FB today, and I thought it an awesome subject upon which to post. This is so very hard, sometimes, but it is so very true. The quicker we learn this lesson, the better, and the key to unlocking its truth is in the freedom of forgiveness.

I have found the quicker you can truly forgive someone who has hurt you, the less like them you will become. Over the years, I have watched family members, friends and acquaintances who have “claimed” forgiveness was in their hearts, but as you listened to them talk about the certain person or circumstances, all you heard was bitterness flowing from their souls. As I’ve watched these year after year, I have seen how, slowly over time, they have become more and more like the person who hurt them, the one whom they haven’t forgiven.

You see, the unforgiveness you harbor within your heart will fester and soak in anger and disgust. Eventually, that unforgiveness takes hold of your soul and buries a root of bitterness deep beneath the surface. Once the root of bitterness takes up space, it will consume and override rational thought, peace and even at times, your own sanity.

Learn to let go. Learn to forgive. Learn to show mercy and grace. It doesn’t mean all is well at the snap of a finger, and it surely doesn’t necessarily mean reconciliation is on the heels of the forgiveness. Some things just get lost in the pain, brokenness and years.

Yet, it does mean your heart can heal. It does mean you can grow and learn and dream once again. It does mean you can grasp hope, embrace love and be consumed by an inner peace that will no longer be easily shaken.

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Forgiveness With A Boundary

 Sometimes, we just have to forgive, simply, because He says so. It may not be easy. It may not be what we want, and it may definitely not be what the other person deserves, but God is very clear in this fact: We Must Forgive. Yet, forgiveness does not always mean reconciliation…

Many times, it may take years to find the ability to forgive, and sometimes, it will come instantly. Some of the hardest moments to forgive are those when someone continues to cause pain and wounds on top of the scars you have already endured. That’s when the real test comes, “Can you forgive…again?”

However, I think, oftentimes for me, the harder test comes as I struggle with the balance between learning to “forgive and walk away” and “forgive and reconcile” when someone continually wounds me, especially when it’s someone for whom I care deeply. It’s easier to forgive and walk away when you don’t have to deal with them daily. It’s easier to forgive and walk away when they’re not family or a close friend. It’s so easy when you can forgive and never worry about seeing them again, but what about those who keep knocking down your door?

As a young child and even as an adult, when someone hurt me, I would always have the tendency to ‘go back for more’ before I cut them off completely and became unforgiving. Not everyone’s problem, I know, but it’s still a problem that must be solved, because this kind of tendency will cause codependency, abuse and lack of boundaries for a healthy life. We must learn to forgive, but we must, also, learn when to say, “No more.”

As I’ve grown older, both in age and in wisdom, I have learned that true forgiveness does not always bring true reconciliation. Sometimes, that other person is just wrong. Sometimes, the other party is too abusive, codependent, mean or just plain cruel, and you are better off to forgive and walk away than to return to the relationship. You have to learn to do this for your own well being, your own health, and your own sanity.

I call this “forgiveness with a boundary.” It doesn’t mean you don’t forgive, and it doesn’t mean you don’t love and care for the person; however, it does mean you draw a line in the sand and say, “No more after today. This is now your boundary into my life. You can come this far but no further. You will not continue to break through and wound my heart to the point I cannot function and live the life I am supposed to live.”

Just as an abused child must learn it’s not okay to be abused, those who have relationships with people who have no boundaries must learn it’s not okay to be used. It’s okay to say no to the abuse of your emotions, your mind and your heart. As I’ve already stated, it’s okay to set boundaries for your life to protect your well being, your health, and your sanity.

This has been my hard lesson learned:

You are a daughter of the Almighty God! You are a daughter of the King! You were not made to grovel in self pity nor in codependency. You were not made to be a doormat. You were not made to be a yo-yo, always up and down with the emotions, feelings and thoughts of others. You are destined to be so much more!

You were created to be YOU, a child of a King! You are a precious, beautiful jewel and you should be treated as such. Stop living with your head held low, always looking to the ground. Look up! For your Redeemer has come. He loves you, and He has called you to be so much more!!

If you find yourself in that kind of place today, in that place of hopelessness, pain and abuse of any kind. I hope you will be encouraged to know there is a better way. There is hope and freedom beyond where you are. He has made it possibly for you to live beyond your pain, beyond your fears and beyond your intimidations!

Thank you, Jesus, for redeeming me and  forgiving me. Thank you for helping me to forgive, and thank you for helping me to learn how to walk away from hurtful people and to live in the freedom you’ve given me and for showing me how to live victoriously! ❤️