“I never knew how strong I was until I had to forgive someone who wasn’t sorry, and accept an apology I never received.”
Or may possibly never get.
I saw this quote on social media after giving birth and it hit me like a ton of bricks.
In the last two years, I’ve seen the true colors of so many people and the lengths they would go to provoke negative reactions and in turn play victim. I’ve seen what a slight disagreement would do to people who you thought were your friends. I’ve seen people hate on you, so green with envy, you would think they were the real Bruce Banner. People would go above and beyond to paint a picture of you, that’s not you at all, and in turn, pit people against you. This is what hate will do. One person’s hatred towards you can cause others to hate you as well, or at least make up in their mind that they won’t even give you a chance.
I never understood why people never wanted to hear all sides to a story, rather than just the one; especially when the one was flawed. I never understood how, a person who knew the entire story, would still act like they didn’t, and in turn never stand up for you. Imagine this happening to you for years. After awhile, you start to think, maybe it is you. You’re the problem. But that’s what the enemy would do. The enemy would make you feel like that to isolate you and make you feel alone. I constantly had to talk to my husband, my best friend, my brother, my sister-in-law, and cousin to make sure I wasn’t crazy. They would tell me the truth because that’s what I expected. Tell me if it’s me and I can improve. I became paranoid because I thought I was the problem, but it turned out that people hate when you stand up for yourself. When you won’t take toxic behavior no matter who the person is.
I struggled with forgiveness, especially when my daughter was born. I never understood why God wanted me to forgive when I was the one who was wronged. When I felt like I was being made a fool. Why do you want me to forgive when the people who hurt me, never said they were sorry or even acknowledged that my feelings were hurt? I’m human too. I have feelings. And if I forgive them, wouldn’t that make me look stupid? Like, they one up me? Lord, I know if I hurt someone’s feelings and I knew I did, I would apologize and make it right. So why can’t people do that for me?
But then I learned, that, forgiveness is not for those who hurt you. Forgiveness is for yourself. Why, do you ask? Because the one who is wronged, is always holding grudges. They are bitter, and upset. This was me. When you can’t forgive those who wronged you, how can you expect God to forgive you? How can you expect to reap the blessings that God has? So here I was, holding my beautiful daughter listening to God tell me that the forgiveness he wanted me to do, was for me. It was so I can move on. It was so I can experience the blessings that God was ready to give me. It was to show that the God that people talk about and claim that they know, lives in me.
“You might be the only Jesus that some people see.” Jesus is all about love, forgiveness, and grace and because we are all striving to be Christ-like, it is important to start practicing what we preach or go to church every Sunday for.
“So, honey, if I forgive them…do I have to say it to their face? This is the question I asked my husband. He then reminded me that forgiveness is not for them. So I didn’t have to. It was for me and between me and God. When I forgive, I must show in my actions. So I pondered a few more weeks because, I’m a Capricorn and I’m stubborn.
But then I did it. I let it all go. I gave it to God. And it felt great. I want my blessings. I want to move on. I have a whole daughter now. My job is to teach her about giving grace, compassion and forgiveness. I will also teach her that is is also okay to guard your heart and never put yourself in a position to be treated a certain way again.
So if you’re struggling with forgiving, remember, it is not for them. The Bible says “Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord (Romans 12:19, KJV), so it’s not our job to get back at those who wrong us and believe me, I wanted to. Our job is to let go and give it to God. Let him handle our heavy load because he can do it better than we can. And when you do, life will get better. Trust.