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How Forgiving Can Set The Prisoner Free

Feelings were hurt, trust was broken and hearts were shattered.

It can be very hard to forgive someone who has hurt you, while it is perfectly normal to feel this pain, forgiveness can have a lot of benefits. Sometimes people hold onto these feelings of hurt and betrayal for far longer than they should and that is not a healthy habit. We all need to learn how to let it go so we can feel happy again and move on.

Learning to let go is not an easy task, but it is possible to do. When you forgive a person of what they have done make sure you are doing it for yourself and not the other person.

Forgiveness doesn't mean:

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean...Forgetting

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean....Having to include said person in your life again

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean...Locking feelings away about the situation

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean...You're excusing the persons actions

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean...The other person has to know you forgave them

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean...The other person will change their behavior

  • Forgiveness doesn't mean...Everything is 100% ok

Forgiveness means that you have accepted what has happened and now you are coming to terms with the situation. You are essentially letting go of all the anger and pain the other person has caused you.

Why It's Hard To Forgive

Forgiving is no easy process, it's a gradual one that should be taken one step at a time. Why is it so hard to forgive? You ask.

Well everyone has different reasons on why it's hard for them to forgive. For some it might be the feeling of being superior over the other person. Others might be out to seek revenge because they feel as though the person may need to suffer the consequences more. Some are afraid to forgive because they're scared to end up hurt again. Lastly, some people just don't know how to forgive.

“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.”

– Lewis B. Smedes

“Forgive others not because they deserve forgiveness, but because you deserve peace.” – Jonathan Huie

How To Forgive

If you have read this far it means that you are ready to forgive someone who is in your life or someone who is not in your life anymore. Whoever the person is I guarantee that forgiving them will be a huge weight off of your chest.

  • First decide if you want to keep this person in your life. If they are a toxic person it is best to forgive and forget

  • When you forgive someone you don't have to let them know. It is up to you if you want to let them know you forgave them or not

  • Try seeing it from their perspective. Take out all emotions from the equation. Did they do what they did for a reason? If so, was it a good reason. What was going on in their life at that moment in time. Did they deserve you getting upset with them?

  • Think about a time someone forgave you for something you have done. What did they do or say to you when they forgave you? How did it make you feel?

  • Write down your thoughts and emotions about the situation. Writing down your thoughts on a piece of paper can help you see the bigger picture.

Of course you will still remember what happened because memories can't be taken away. What can be taken away are the feelings such as anger and resentment that bounds you because forgiveness is that final goodbye that you need to feel free and honor yourself.

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