“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.”
1 Peter 5:7 NLT
Forgiveness is a complex topic.
We hear about it’s power and ability to bring a freedom into our lives that we’ve not known before.
But we don’t talk about the process of getting to forgiving those who have hurt us, including and ESPECIALLY those we love.
We watch shows like Iyanla Vanzant’s ‘Fix My Life’ and see the struggles people endure for just a week or two trying to forgive and let go of what’s happened in the past.
Sometimes, forgiveness doesn’t happen that way, where people are in the same room admitting to and apologizing for the things they’ve done. We don’t have an Iyanla Vanzant to make people confess their sins and wrongdoings to us.
Sometimes, those who are wrong don’t feel as if they were wrong, don’t recall or remember the offense, and don’t think they need to apologize.
I believe that forgiveness has a process before facing the wrongdoer.
Sometimes, we might be tripping. Sometimes, the person could be so comfortable and familiar, that they feel as if what they said or did wasn’t out of line.
But then there are times that we KNOW the person was wrong, THEY knew they were wrong, but there’s no apology coming.
Can you handle someone not apologizing, even when they know they’re in the wrong?
There are times when I know I couldn’t handle it. I would try and express myself and confront the person who hurt me. When I got no apology, I was in pieces. I felt worse when I received no apology than I did from the offense!
I realized that sometimes, to truly forgive, you have to do the work behind closed doors, without the other person. If you’re looking for your healing in an apology, you’re going to be hurting a long time. Think about those who were angry with their parents, never said anything, and when they’re parents passed on, they were broken because their healing never came.
What if they person who hurt you died tomorrow? Would your healing and forgiveness be lost forever?
We must learn how to forgive the offender without an apology from them. When we place our healing, freedom, and power in a person’s words, we’re giving them control over who we are. We hold ourselves back from moving on and being all that we’re meant to be because of two words “I’m Sorry”… and those words may never come. So does that mean we stay stuck in the moment we were hurt or broken? Or do we learn how to forgive without having to worry about what the other person says or does?
Whether you confront the offender or not, you can still access forgiveness. You can still be set free from the hurt and pain. You may not be able to do it on your own at first, and that’s why we’re told to cast all out cares onto God. He gives us the strength and power to forgive others.
So who do you need to forgive?