HEALING EMOTIONAL WOUNDS: Freedom Through Forgiveness
Take a moment and think about the word, “forgiveness”. What emotions does such an activity stir in you? Do you find it fills you with a feeling of sweet security and well-being? Your conscience is clear and you have peace knowing that nothing is held against you. Now remove the ending of the word and you are left with, “forgive”. Suddenly your emotions change as you contemplate whether, or not you are willing to let go of all the hurts you have held onto for years. Intense feelings rise-up and restrict your throat and possibly your breathing. Fear, anger, and rage fill your entire being. FORGIVE? How dare anyone suggest such a thing! Forgiveness is often the last hurdle before we enjoy our healing. We struggle with forgiving those who have hurt us because we think to forgive means to say, “I am over the pain”. Or we think to forgive means, “to let them off the hook; to let them away with it”. They don’t deserve forgiveness and we want them to suffer as much as we have. Pride or fear often gets in the way of forgiving. Crucial to forgiveness is the understanding of what it means to genuinely forgive and what it does not.