I must confess that I struggle to forgive people in certain situations. I find it easier to forgive those who do things to me than it is to forgive those who hurt the people I love. There are a couple specific people who come to mind as I write this. When I look at the pain and suffering these people have caused out of selfishness and their own “brokenness,” well it is a struggle. I can see their weakness and inability to love and keep their promises, but I also see that people who have experienced worse that continue to help instead of hurting others.

In my weakest moments I want these people who have caused such havoc in the lives of those I love to reap what they have sown. I want them to see the product of the seeds of anger, selfishness, and greed in their lives. But I also know that those feelings hurt me and do nothing to them. My anger is my problem because there is not positive outlet for it. All I can do is love those I love more, and support them as much as possible.

God tells us to love one another. It is easy to love those close to us (most of the time), but to love our enemies and pray for them? Well the only way I can do that is by giving my heart and everything else up to God.

I keep a small book of names, events, and issues that I pray about. The act of writing the names of those who have hurt me or my family is one of the hardest acts of faith that I do. It is getting easier the more times I do it, but the first time I wrote down the name of someone who had committed bad acts it was difficult. Right there on the page with those I love, I am writing the name of someone who hates and hurts others. “Transformative” is the only word I can use to describe it. Realizing that following God for the good things is easy, but forgiving, praying for, and being kind to an “enemy”? Only God can enable me to do this: All things are truly possible with God!

Today I focus on forgiveness and letting go of the anger. I focus on what I can do to move forward positively with loving actions. For if I cannot love and forgive, then I am not following God. I cannot ask for love and forgiveness if I cannot grant it. The Lord’s Prayer has us pray, “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” I know I need forgiveness so I must forgive.

I serve the one true God of love, mercy, and forgiveness. He is also a God of justice and accountability. I know that God will handle everything ultimately. I also know that God’s plans have everything work to the good of what He wants to happen.

God grant me the ability to forgive – the small and the big things.
God give me a heart open to mercy and grace, love and generosity.
God give me the ability to understand others and to see them through loving eyes.
Let me not act in haste or anger;
Let me bless those who curse me and heap upon them all that is good,
So that they may turn to you.

 

Author:  Lea A. Strickland, MBA CMA CFM CBM GMC
Copyright ©2012 Lea A. Strickland
All Rights Reserved

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