Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. ?? Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.–Ephesians 4:31-32
We are all on a life long journey, and the core of its meaning — the terrible demand of its centrality — is forgiving and being forgiven.To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you; it is giving up the possibility of a better past; it is me giving up my right to hurt you for hurting me; it is accepting God’s sovereign use of people and situations to strip you of self importance, and humiliate your self love.Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it. It is the answer to the child’s dream of a miracle by which what is broken is made whole again, what is soiled is made clean again.Not to forgive is to be imprisoned by the past, by old grievances that do not permit life to proceed with new business. Not to forgive is to yield oneself to another’s control… to be locked into a sequence of act and response, of outrage and revenge, tit for tat, escalating always. The present is endlessly overwhelmed and devoured by the past. Forgiveness frees the forgiver. It extracts the forgiver from someone else’s nightmare.For to err is human; but to forgive is divine.And unfortunately, it is easier to do to an enemy than to a friend.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.?? By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.???–John 13:34-35