It’s a word that says so much, but is hard to define. Such a touchy subject for so many. Having been on both sides of that equation, there are a few things I have noticed. The meaning of the word forgiveness seems to mean different things to different people.
Some people are willing to forgive repeatedly and that can make them become the unwilling target of people who abuse of that forgiving nature.
These people can be very destructive and I have learnt to avoid them for they abuse people without ever learning to stop. Asking for forgiveness is just a ploy to get a free pass of the mistakes they have made without thought or consideration. They have learnt that saying “I’m sorry” gets them out of things but they don’t understand the meaning.
Then I have seen people who make mistakes, cause harm and hurt and run away from it and later on say they forgive themselves which is fine since the new people in their lives never really knew what they have done. It’s easy to forgive someone you just met who puts their best foot forward.Even if you tell them your sins does not mean they understand since it was not done to them. It’s like asking someone new to forgive you of things you did to others. They can offer comfort but they can’t actually forgive you.
So they get a clean slate and can partially forget their wrongdoings because they have reinvented themselves and that is okay, but forgiving yourself without asking to be forgiven is an empty gesture and a selfish one.
Some people also choose religion or God to forgive them and that’s fine, except, that it was not religion or a God that they hurt, it was other human beings, and putting it in the Lord’s hands is just another way to avoid having to apologize to the actual person. It’s avoidance, it’s that simple.
Apologizing for your wrongdoings is not easy by any stretch of the imagination, and there are no guarantees that the other person will forgive you.
Even if they understand and forgive you, that relationship can be forever changed since although you may have gone past the hurt, it does not mean the people you harmed did.
Asking people to live with your decisions are not always what they want to do. And you have to respect that.
Things may never go back to the way it was, and you have a choice of living with that new relationship or backing out of it.
If anyone has ever told me that I have harmed them or I know that I have (since lets face it, you can do dumb stuff sometimes and not realize it), I will try to talk it out, say something. I have said I was sorry many times in my life and meant it. I have found the faster you do it, the better you are at saving a relationship. And people will always take into consideration that you have taken responsibility for your actions without making excuses for them, even if they were good excuses.
The longer you wait. The bigger the wedge.
In any case I find that dealing with situations head on usually resolves them one way or another and is a much better way of moving forward in your own life. Any other way is just avoidance and can be perceived as indifference. And those things have never nurtured a relationship.
So if you feel a weight in your heart today and need forgiveness. As hard as it may seem to do it, why don’t you try to call or contact that person and say what you feel and give a heartfelt apology if one is needed. And save yourself the mental clutter that might come back later to haunt you, cause life has a way of making you deal with stuff eventually.
Even if they do not forgive you, you can always rest assured that you have tried and done so with all your heart.
Have a peaceful and healing day!