When someone you care about hurts you, you can hold on to anger until the bitter end — or embrace forgiveness and get on with your life.
Forgiving someone who has wronged you does not mean you are minimizing the wrong that was done to you. At some point, nearly everyone has been hurt by the words or actions of another. Perhaps your sibling criticized your parenting skills or your coworker sabotaged a project. These wounds can leave you with lasting feelings of bitterness and anger, but if you don’t practice forgiveness, you might be the one who suffers the consequences. By embracing forgiveness, you can also embrace joy, hope, peace, and gratitude. Consider how forgiveness can lead you down the path of physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.
What Is Forgiveness?
Generally, forgiveness is a decision to let go of resentment and thoughts of revenge. The act that hurt or offended you might always remain a part of your life, but forgiveness can lessen its grip on you and help you focus on other, positive parts of your life. Forgiveness can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt you.
Forgiveness doesn’t mean that you deny the other person’s responsibility for hurting you, and it doesn’t minimize or justify the wrong. You can forgive the person without excusing the act. Forgiveness brings a kind of peace that helps you go on with life.
What Are The Benefits Of Forgiving Someone?
Letting go of anger and vengefulness can make way for compassion, kindness and peace. Forgiveness can lead to:
- In obedience to God
- Because we also want to be forgiven for our sins
- Being able to heal and move forward
- Healthier relationships
- Greater spiritual and psychological well-being
- Less anxiety, stress and hostility
- Fewer symptoms of depression
It’s unhealthy to view forgiveness as letting someone off the hook or minimizing the wrong that was done to you. Forgiveness is not about what you give away and it’s not about downplaying wrongdoing. It’s about Let go and Let God!
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