As a pastoral counselor I sometimes have one on one talks, or sessions, with persons and their problems. In general they want someone to listen to them and to offer practical suggestions.
Let me tell you a brief story of a lady who came to me with a problem. She said that she could not forgive her stepfather, who molested her, many years before, although she had no desire for vengeance. She claimed that she could never get past the pain of it and felt that she could not leave her children, and grandchildren, with her mother because of the stepfather. Upon further talking with her I found out that she was mislead on the issue of forgiveness. She thought, and was taught, by some minister, that if she forgives someone all the pain would be instantly gone and it would be as if nothing had ever happened. She also was told by some elder that she must treat her stepfather as if nothing happened!!! She even had a guilt trip added to her burden!! She was evidently told that she felt bad because she had not truly forgiven the person! No wonder she felt so bad. I, myself, was angered by this. She had been misled in several ways. She was taught wrong. Actually forgiving someone does not mean you feel just like nothing ever happened, nor does it mean common sense, like protecting children, is set aside!! When you forgive someone, you essentially dismiss them to God to deal with. The Greek word for forgive is Ephiemi, and it implies that you are letting the person go or sending them off-to God... I found that the lady actually had forgiven her stepfather and gave him over to God, and I also found that she was properly concerned for her youngins. Her real problem was that she had a guilt trip laid at her door and of course the bad memories were still present. After talking with me a burden was lifted from her shoulder. She is now about 65 years of age. I also had her pray to God to take away the pain.. And bring closure and reconciliation.
It is important that we counsel correctly and not add guilt to someone who has been wronged, rapped, injured, or hurt in some way. Remember that God is our refuge--and we are to help, and edify one another!!! (Jude 20).
The Authority of the Gentile Illuminati, the Goy of Sothoth, is by BIRTHRIGHT... Just like Jesus,Just like Isaac,
What a great post! Thanks for sharing that story! I know how powerful and amazing forgiveness can be, as I have experienced its amazing effets many of times. But I never thought about it like that- that it is "giving it to God".
Sometimes, I give so much to God (my burdens) that I almost feel guilty, like it's a "cop-out". I mean, I know I am to carry my own cross. But, I also seek to glorify God that my faith and submission will please Him. So, when I worked on forgiveness, I never saw it as if I was giving it to the Lord. Thank-you for that analogy.
For me, I recall two instances of firgiveness that changed me.
One was, dealing with forgiving my step daughters' mom. She has done so many horrible things to them, and terrible things to me, and when I thought I could/worked on forgiving, she would just go around and do something else, then the anger would accumularte and fester up inside of me. It was a never ending circle.
So I knew of the verse
Matt 6:14 which says "For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you", so, I worked on forgiving her- for ME. (hmm- right motive? I think not).
Then, I thought of the verse Luke 6:29
"And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy coat also."
So, I aimed to forgive because it was the right thing to do.
And God reminded me of who I was before I knew Him- all the sinful things I did. I wasn't a nice person at all.
I began praying for her out of obedeince at first. I tried- I really tried, to sincerely mean what I asked for on her behalf. I even included in my prayer, because I know the Lord knows our hearts, that as I prayed, the hate was still present. But, when I first submitted to the Word and prayed for her, I began to WANT to care. I wanted to mean what I was saying. Then,it wasnt long at all that I truly did mean what I was saying. I started to feel a care for her and develop an understanding thanks be to God, for why she was the way she was. Soon, the selfishness I had, the anger I had- it all dissapated and the love of Christ fuilled me in this situation. As soon as I sought forgivess for her, and forgiveness for myself in the things I may have done to instigate and felt and said, etc... The burden of hate was gone. And that was years ago. To this day, as she continues to do her wicked deeps, I am able to pray with a sincere heart, and be a better step mom to my girls.
And the other instance of forgiveness, is one that manyof us allow to pass by- forgiving ourselves.
Only God can forgive sins, but, if we allow who we were before the Lord, to remain in guilt and shame, it will eat us up. I practiced the occult, and taught MANY MANY MANY on those practices. I sinned greatly before the Lord because I did not know Him or His Word.. I held such disgrace for who I was and what I did, that it weighed down my spiritual walk- not being able to tap in to Who God truly was- Love and Mercy! My Redeemer! I worked so hard on letting go of my past- although I now use it to witness and encourage people where they can go with the Lord.
It seemed Judas was not able to forgive Himself for what he did, and it killed him. He went mad in that guilt. I refused to let a emotion NOT of God hold me back from Him.
So, when I was able to read and realize WHo God is, all-forgiving and He also FORGETS our sins when we confess and move on- then, we can give ourselves fully to Him.
I devote my time, life, energy to Him- to serving Him, praising Him- for all He is, and for all He has done for me, it almost seemes if we cannot forgive, then what He at Calvary would be in vain.
So, truly, forgivess is like you said- giving it to God. And a powerful tool He has given us.
Thank you so very much for this story for it was very uplifting. Because of this story I have a better clarification of the true meaning of forgiveness. Up until reading your story, I never thought of forgiveness as dismissing our pain and wrongs caused by others to deal with it.
Finally, I have often wondered why even after forgiving someone, the pain and suffering caused by their wrongs did not immediately dissipate. Thank you so very much for sharing yourn story and insight.
I know it is hard brothers and sister but don't be self-centered, think of others instead~~~~Here are some power verses:
1 Corinthians 10:24, "Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others."
Romans 15:2-3, "Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For even Christ did not please himself."
This is a really important topic and I think many family/society/world problems would be solved if Christians took Jesus' command to forgive 70x7 seriously. There is a really good free ebook about this called "Why Forgive?" If you have read it, please comment! If you haven't, please take a look, it is full of real-life stories of forgiveness.