Forgiveness = Freedom

Gosh, it’s so hard to forgive. We know we should. We feel we ought. But, sometimes we’d just rather hold onto that grudge and let it stew a little. Let it marinate. Let the venom build up so that we can spew it at any given moment when reminded of the person who offended us or the situation which embarrassed us. Oh, we’ll show them!

But will we?

I mean, what good does it do to hold onto anger and resentment or even to have vengeance in your heart? It only serves in making you a miserable human being. And all of your energy is wasted on these awful feelings. Maybe I’m oversimplifying this whole subject…but maybe not.

I’m not for a moment suggesting that whatever was done that hurt you is not awful. Not at all. Maybe whatever happened really hurt. Maybe it was really wrong or unfair or mean or uncalled for or damaging. I’m not discrediting whatever happened to you. I’m not trying to say that you shouldn’t feel wronged or hurt or betrayed or offended. What I AM saying is that holding onto unforgiveness really doesn’t do you any good.

It is like ivy. Have you ever seen ivy grow along the walls of the outside of a house. It may start with just a few vines creeping up the walls, but over time, it literally takes over. It spreads covering every possible surface. If you don’t manage it, it will completely take over. That’s how unforgiveness is. It may start small. But, if left unchecked, it can grow to overtake you.

climbing-ivy

Don’t believe me? I’m sure we’ve all met or known at least one bitter person who has been holding onto the same grudge for YEARS. They bring up the topic of their offense repeatedly like a recording on a loop. They never got over whatever it was. They’ve stewed in their unforgiveness for so long that they’ve become this awfully negative, toxic, bitter person and/or their personal growth was stunted. Because they never got over the offense and never chose to let it go, they’ve remained STUCK. They’ve not grown or changed for the better. It’s like an invisible restraint, prohibiting the person from moving forward. But, the only way they can break free is if they choose to break free by forgiving – and setting their own heart and mind free.

I didn’t say it was easy. It’s almost always difficult. But, it begins with a CHOICE at first. You have to choose to forgive. And most of the time it is not an instantaneous fix. You won’t always feel better immediately. Most of the time it is a process where you make the conscious decision time and again to release that offense or person from the mental jail you’ve put them into. You’re not really punishing them, so much as you’ve been punishing yourself by brooding.

This is such a large topic to cover and this post is only scratching the surface. But know that forgiveness is often a process and yes it can take on many forms. Sometimes it means quietly within yourself choosing to forgive. Sometimes it means confronting someone in a safe setting. Sometimes it means actually telling the person you forgive them. Though you forgive, that doesn’t mean you have to return to the previous state of friendship or relationship. Forgiveness can involve you realizing that you must construct healthy and necessary boundaries. Sometimes those boundaries may include reducing, limiting or prohibiting further contact with that person or those people who offended or harmed you. There are various scenarios. But, the important thing is that you FORGIVE FOR YOUR OWN WELL BEING.

From a faith perspective, God says we must forgive others because He forgave us, this can be also difficult to swallow. But, if this is your belief, then you understand that we have been forgiven much, therefore, how can we, in turn, choose not to forgive others. But, forgiveness is not something we’re left alone to grapple with. God helps us via his Holy Spirit to have the capacity and desire to forgive. We have His assistance. And all of the above (in this article) still applies. God desires our freedom from things that would be negative and that would bind us. He knows that if we choose to hang onto unforgiveness it is like a poison to us and he’d rather we are free from any poison in our lives.

It is my hope and prayer that something said here has helped you, whether you’re a person of faith or not, forgiveness is key to our health and well-being.

Blessings.
-KD

©KD Corner 2015 “Forgiveness = Freedom”

Photo credit – Google Images

Can’t Go On…

despair

I can’t go on
Oh no, I can’t go on
Every step falters
Weak ankles, trembling knees
Worn out legs, weak hips
I can barely take a step
Without pain
Coursing through my body
Shooting up my spine
Hunching me over

Feeble hands, weak arms
Trembling fingers, head bowed
This life has taken its toll on me
A long and arduous journey it’s been.
Tired.
I’m so tired.
How can I take one more step?
I want to give up…
What’s the point of all of this?

Tears of years of anguish begin to flow
The tears are a release
A release of pent up pain, bitterness and frustration
I’ve asked God “why?” a million times,
With my heart breaking in prayer
Longing to hear His answer, His solution, His reason
For all I’ve had to endure thus far
For all I’m in the process of enduring

The sobs turn into whimpers
The whimpers into sniffles
The sniffles into silence
I sit
In awkward silence…waiting
For his answer.
The silence continues
And with every passing second, minute, several minutes
I get angrier,

“WHERE ARE YOU???”
“DO YOU EVEN CARE???”
I yell at God.

And the violence of my sobs returns
I cry until I can cry no more
Exhausted, I fall asleep
When I awake
My heart still aches
The pain is still raw
With the disappointment that He still hadn’t answered

“Daddy (God).”
I call out to the Lord in quiet desperation
Like a child longing for Papa
With eagerness, yet more humility now than before.
Tears fall from the corner of my eye, one by one, in rapid succession.

“Daddy?”

“I’m here.” His voice, almost audible, resonates within my soul.

Tears flow more readily now.
He’s here. He’s here!
He is here with me.
He’s not left me at all!

Out erupts my verbal barrage of questions
Flowing out like an unyielding stream
Like a small child asking every question under the sun
Desiring answers.
When I’ve asked Him every possible question I can think of – I go silent
Feeling silly for rambling on so, but still awaiting some answer.

Quietly I sit.
Moments pass.
I breathe.
I wait,
More patiently this time.
And just when the silence begins to agitate me
And I start to feel antsy, He speaks again…

“I am here, child.
I’ve been here all along.
I’ll never leave you.”

His voice, unmistakable.
My tears stream.
He’s here.

“Dad (God), I’m so tired…” I confess, halfway pouting and all-the-way exhausted.

“I know. I’m here.” He says.

I don’t get many outright answers,
But I’m assured that I’m not alone.
And as I sit in His Presence and reflect,
He brings to mind a flurry of scriptures that remind me of His faithfulness.
I begin to look up a few of them and begin to be really encouraged:

Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you HOPE and a future….”

Isaiah 41:10 – So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Hebrews 13: 5-6 – Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So that we may boldly say, “The Lord is my helper. I will not fear. What can man do to me?”

Psalm 23:4-5 – Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.

Jeremiah 2:23-26 – Be glad, O people of Zion, rejoice in the Lord your God, for he has given you the autumn and spring rains, as before. The threshing floors will be filled with grain; the vats will overflow with new wine and oil. “I will repay (restore) you for the years the locusts have eaten – the great locust and the young locust, and other locusts and the locust swarm – my great army that I sent among you. You will have plenty to eat, until you are full, and you will praise the name of the Lord your
God, who has worked wonders for you; never again will my people be shamed.”

Isaiah 61:1-4a & 7-8a – The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach the good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty for the captives and release prisoners from darkness, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn and provide for those who grieve in Zion – to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning; and the garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor. They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations…Instead of their shame my people will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace they will rejoice in their inheritance; and so they will inherit a double portion in their land, and everlasting joy will be theirs. For I the Lord, love justice….”

Isaiah 62:1-5 – For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, for Jerusalem’s sake I will not remain quiet, till her righteousness shines out like the dawn, her salvation like a blazing torch. The nations will see your righteousness, and all kings your glory; you will be called by a new name that the mouth of the Lord will bestow. You will be a crown of splendor in the Lord’s hand, a royal diadem in the hand of your God. No longer will they call you Deserted, or name your land Desolate. But you will be called Hephzibah (meaning – my delight is in her) and your land Beulah (means – married); for the Lord will take delight in you and your land will be married. (I think it’s beautiful how God loves us)

Joshua 1:9 – “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Proverbs 31:28a – Her children arise and call her blessed….

Psalm 34:17-18 – The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.

John 14:25-27 – [Jesus Christ speaking] “All this I have spoken while still with you. But, the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

John 16:33b – “…In this world you will have trouble (tribulation); but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

The Lord impressed upon me to write this today.
If you’ve ever felt this way, or similar, please remember that you are not alone. Though we suffer many things, whether physical, emotional, mental, etc., He is still with us.
He is with you right now, though you cannot see him.
You may not have all of the answers,
And God may not divulge reasons or explanations at present,
But know, believe, trust that there is a greater purpose for your life than what you may see right now.

If you’re in an abusive situation and your life is in danger PLEASE get to a safe place and get help if you possibly can. I pray God’s protection over you and that he would grant you wisdom, favor, and an escape to safety. And that he would hide you from harm. If you need help, call 1−800−799−SAFE(7233). If you need help dealing with alcohol/drugs 1-800-784-6776. For gambling addiction help 1-800-522-4700. For help with pornography addiction, visit this website: XXXChurch. For other struggles you may need or want help with that I haven’t listed, please visit this LINK.  If you know about human trafficking and want to report it, call: 1-888-3737-888.  You are precious. Never forget that.

Be encouraged today!
He is here!

© “Can’t Go On…” KD Corner 2013 All Rights Reserved

Photo credit: Here