Thoughts on forgiveness . . .

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water

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #20 on: July 31, 2014, 09:17:25 PM »
Hawkie, my three sons came over and supported my grief with my dad dying and it was managed by them, they knew it was hard for me and my first words in my prayer at the fire were "God please forgive my father.." because that is so hard to do. And I prayed that "my children had some good memories with their grandfather", which we did talk about later around the fire.  There were hundreds of sticks burnt that day and they were every dismissal, every abusive act, every hurt and they were gone. It burned for three days, with smoke still coming off of it the third day and the fourth day it had cooled off. It was weird really, the fire lasting so long.

(H never met him but supported me and he heard our last phone call--weeks later he still is shocked at the things my dad said to me)

Breaking a cord, or as someone here said, can you just say a prayer and send it off into the universe to share your forgiveness or letting go. I think it lands outside yourself, in the universe but not at your feet. It's gone, it's out there, the truth doesn't change but the feelings get better.

My aunt, her abusive dad was dead, she really helped me make sense of forgiveness (by listening unconditionally and asking questions) and she was able to do that with her dad being dead before she figured it out (my grandfather and my dad were cut from the same cloth). So I almost think of my aunt as a wiser elder that helped me by sharing her medicine, her wisdom to get to where I could benefit from her experience. It helped so much. So if you can take this 'medicine', if you can cut the cord, let the end of it land in the universe on mars or in another galaxy or somewhere in God's Kingdom depending on your frame of reference, then do it for you. You are worth it, taking that is not 'taking' it doesn't deprive anyone of anything, forgiveness is a gift you give yourself.

I loved, I loved what I wanted in a dad, I loved him when he didn't treat me right, I loved, it's okay to love. That is how love is, it's just like forgiveness, it's a gift.

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142757

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #21 on: August 03, 2014, 07:38:31 PM »
Reading what Jesus had to say on the topic in other verses can help us understand what Jesus meant. Particularly directly after his reply to Peter.......

Matt 18:23-35 - 
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"That is why the Kingdom of the heavens may be likened to a king who wanted to settle accounts with his slaves. When he started to settle them, a man was brought in who owed him 10,000 talents. But because he did not have the means to pay it back, his master ordered him and his wife and his children and all the things he owned to be sold and payment to be made.  So the slave fell down and did obeisance to him, saying, Be patient with me, and I will pay back everything to you. Moved with pity at this, the master of that slave let him off and canceled his debt. But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves, who owed him 100 denar′ii, and grabbed him and began to choke him, saying, Pay back whatever you owe. So his fellow slave fell down and began to beg him, saying, Be patient with me, and I will pay you back. However, he was not willing, but he went and had him thrown into prison until he could pay back what he owed. When his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they became greatly distressed, and they went and reported to their master all the things that had happened. Then his master summoned him and said to him: Wicked slave, I canceled all that debt for you when you pleaded with me.   Should you not also have shown mercy to your fellow slave as I showed mercy to you?' With that his master, provoked to wrath, handed him over to the jailers until he repaid all that he owed.   My heavenly Father will also deal with you in the same way if each of you does not forgive your brother from your heart.

Matt 6:14,15 -
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For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you;   whereas if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

We sin against God every day. Yet Jehovah doesn't put a limit on how many times he forgives us. We should do the same for our fellow man.

This does not mean, however, they we are required to forgive those that are unrepentant. To apply it more directly to our common situations, it maybe necessary to break off a relationship with someone who can't, or worse, won't change. Hebrews 10:26 -
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"For if we practice sin willfully after having received the accurate knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice for sins left"

So as I read it, the Scriptures want us to forgive freely when a person is sincere & working to prevent the same from happening again. But if the same hurt is going to come again and again, it would not be expected that the victim continue to put up with it.

"Somedays you just can't get rid of a bomb."

Adam West (Batman)
9/19/28 - 6/10/17

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Hawkie

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #22 on: August 04, 2014, 08:19:27 PM »
water, that is such a beautiful thing, the way you and your family processed the grieving and used the bonfire as a symbol of release; and how wonderful to have such supportive sons and husband, as well as your aunt! i will continue to think on your words and their wisdom. Thank you!!

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water

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #23 on: August 05, 2014, 02:13:27 AM »
 :hug: thank you, I have many tears on this, those are good tears, thank you for understanding it. :'( :'( :'( it's good tears

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Spring Butterfly

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #24 on: August 05, 2014, 11:48:18 AM »
What an amazing post! What wonderful thoughts and expressions. Thank you all.

(The thoughts below wound up longer than I intended and will help me remember some of the thoughts and scriptures so I can come back and review this thread)

I'll add the thought of pity to my growing vocabulary around the topic. That vocabulary is pardon and reconciliation. I tend not to use the word forgive for the very reason it means different things to different people. It's very fuzzy.

In its rawest / unemotional / logical form I like this description of forgiveness:
"Forgiveness is different from condoning (failing to see the action as wrong and in need of forgiveness), excusing (not holding the offender as responsible for the action), pardoning (granted by a representative of society, such as a judge), forgetting (removing awareness of the offense from consciousness), and reconciliation (restoration of a relationship). In certain contexts, forgiveness is a legal term for absolving or giving up all claims on account of debt, loan, obligation or other claims."
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forgiveness

Pardon:
to release (a person) from liability for an offense.
to remit the penalty of (an offense)
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pardon
It's a remission of legal consequences of an offense or forgiveness so it's not on me to exact punishment and has nothing to do with the other party's guilt or innocence. It's release of resentment and forgoing claim to recompense. It's ceasing to pursue reconciliation. It's between the other party and God, let them explain to him how and why they abused others when they're called to answer for their life choices. I like the idea of pity above tied to this thought on pardon.

Reconciliation requires two parties and is the subject of the verses above in Matthew about sitting with your brother. The restoration of a relationship requires both parties to come together.  It requires an exchange to restore harmony. It requires change.

The scriptures show a difference between forgiveness and reconciliation. Forgiveness from God is one sided, we continue to sin, we ask forgiveness, it is granted. He sent his son to die for sinners whether they believe in him or not. Matthew 5:44

Reconciliation: Colossians 1:19-22  Romans 5:9  Isaiah 1:8

We aren't require to forgive the willfully malicious. Hebrews 10:36-21
Each and every contact with a PD person results in damage. Plan accordingly and make time to heal. See Toolbox for tips. Individuation is the key to emotional freedom.

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whataboutbob

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #25 on: August 08, 2014, 04:55:50 PM »
Another thing that has been hard for me is the reality that justice and accountability doesn't seem to exist in the vampire's world. They've learned along the way of a life of cheating that cheating is easy. Grifters. Karma is a slow process and the slower a soul the longer the process. Our job is to let Jesus carry them on his back. For God's sake there must be two sets of tracks upon the beach. One deep set of tracks means that we conscience gifted folks are exhausted and going to collapse. For me, realizing that worshiping the devas makes me a secondary psychopath, becomes a moment for stopping. Ethical people do not follow, but are free.

Compassion, empathy, love, willing to die on the cross before harming another; it's quite a journey for us.

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sharie

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #26 on: August 08, 2014, 06:40:10 PM »
I recently read that forgiveness is simply accepting that I will never get what I was owed from that person.  I found that very freeing.  It doesn't mean I have to be a doormat or hop back into disfunction.  It just means I am free to move on.  I wish I could tell you where I read that.  It was either on this site or in Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend.

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Spring Butterfly

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #27 on: August 08, 2014, 08:18:28 PM »
Sharie I like that very much.
Each and every contact with a PD person results in damage. Plan accordingly and make time to heal. See Toolbox for tips. Individuation is the key to emotional freedom.

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Kestrel

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #28 on: August 09, 2014, 12:04:42 PM »
I recently read that forgiveness is simply accepting that I will never get what I was owed from that person. 

I like that.  I think I will be able to forgive with that definition eventually.  Thanks for sharing, sharie.

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seekingvision

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #29 on: September 24, 2014, 01:39:26 PM »
Forgiving does not mean taking more of the same.

Forgiving does not mean taking away the consequences.  that is pardon.

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Annegirl

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #30 on: September 25, 2014, 07:24:04 AM »
I always thought forgiveness means we forgive them but don't accept what they did or have to keep taking it. But then what did your Jesus mean when he said forgive not 7 times but 70 times 7.? I think we don't have to keep taking abuse but if that person hurts you or you hear about them lying about you or something then if we forgive we let it go and it stays with that person, we are free.
You don't water a flower if it blooms, you water it so it will bloom. (Naomi Aldort)

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Spring Butterfly

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #31 on: September 25, 2014, 07:42:31 AM »
Exactly, Jesus himself exited hostile lose lose situations he chose not to confront. He confronted his enemies and didn't just take it when his enemies tried to trap him with words. He often left them speechless, unable to dispute further. The ultimate medium chill!
« Last Edit: September 25, 2014, 08:30:27 AM by Spring Butterfly »
Each and every contact with a PD person results in damage. Plan accordingly and make time to heal. See Toolbox for tips. Individuation is the key to emotional freedom.

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Annegirl

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #32 on: September 25, 2014, 08:04:41 AM »
Exactly, Jesus himself exited hostile lose lose situations he chose not to confront. He confronted his enemies and didn't just take it when his enemies grid to trap him with words. He often left them speechless, unable to dispute further. The ultimate medium chill!

 :) I like it
You don't water a flower if it blooms, you water it so it will bloom. (Naomi Aldort)

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Brave_heart

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #33 on: October 04, 2014, 10:44:39 PM »
I wanted to add, I once a heard a preacher and a church member discussing heaven and recognizing whether or not our loved ones would be reunited with is in that context. The preacher didn't have the answer but said that if we understood that loved ones didn't make it in, that we would feel justice was served. It would not be right or wrong but an acknowledgement that Jesus knows best and our complete acceptance of his judgement. Our submission to his will.

 That thought hit me very deeply. It's not for me to judge anyone else. My job is to forgive and to love others. Forgiveness isn't stupidity. It's to give the judgement to Jesus and to put it in his hands. The bible has clear statements that if people don't listen to others who have sins against them, then we are to cut them off. We are biblically able to remove and protect ourselves from them. Protect yourself and give it to HIM for judgement. It's not our place.

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CathyMathy

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #34 on: October 05, 2014, 06:30:50 AM »
The preacher didn't have the answer but said that if we understood that loved ones didn't make it in, that we would feel justice was served.

I never heard that before.  This thought has much power for me.  Thanks.

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Spring Butterfly

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #35 on: October 11, 2014, 08:57:49 AM »
I like very much the thought of not judging. It's something so typical of so many toxic people to judge others. Each one much stand for his own self alone. Romans 14:12
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water

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #36 on: October 11, 2014, 04:51:34 PM »
I was brought up to believe from my mom, that we should never complain or judge others. The reason was that if we aren't willing to look ourselves in the eye, to consider that the thing we are judging them on, may be something we ourselves do. It comes from the bible, about removing the splinter from the offenders eye while we have our own log in our eye.

So as a child, and teenager, I found fault with no one. I was told in my yearbooks, 'never change, stay the way you are'.

While that is all nicey nice, I did not discern, I did not judge and I let people walk all over me. It's a naive thing at best. When we see horrors or abuse piled on us, it's best to discern that this is not healthy for us, to create space between the horror or abuse and not allow it again.

We can still forgive, an act between ourselves and God, and we can protect ourselves from further horror or abuse. I had black and white thinking as a child, NEVER judge, always Forgive. Now I'm an adult, I can see what is good, right, bad, wrong, and every gray area inbetween and why it happened.

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Slowly Healing

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #37 on: October 13, 2014, 10:18:00 PM »
I was brought up to believe from my mom, that we should never complain or judge others. The reason was that if we aren't willing to look ourselves in the eye, to consider that the thing we are judging them on, may be something we ourselves do. It comes from the bible, about removing the splinter from the offenders eye while we have our own log in our eye.

So as a child, and teenager, I found fault with no one. I was told in my yearbooks, 'never change, stay the way you are'.

While that is all nicey nice, I did not discern, I did not judge and I let people walk all over me. It's a naive thing at best. When we see horrors or abuse piled on us, it's best to discern that this is not healthy for us, to create space between the horror or abuse and not allow it again.

We can still forgive, an act between ourselves and God, and we can protect ourselves from further horror or abuse. I had black and white thinking as a child, NEVER judge, always Forgive. Now I'm an adult, I can see what is good, right, bad, wrong, and every gray area inbetween and why it happened.

Me too. I remember a nun telling us in religion class: Don't point a finger at others - only point it at yourself. I took it to mean that there could only be something wrong with me, and I had to overcome my "sin." What 8-year-old kid deserves that???

Therefore, this teaching/preaching, plus my mother's mental illness, my father's ineffective parenting, and my extended family's silence all contributed to my problems. I naturally am an easygoing, flexible, helpful person. But these platitudes don't help a child in an awful situation . . . and it played out in every bad relationship that I ever had.

Now, I'm starting to catch on.  Thank God for second chances!
"So oftentimes it happens, that we live our lives in chains/And we never even know we have the key"
- The Eagles, "Already Gone"

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DealingWithIt

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #38 on: October 14, 2014, 10:36:38 AM »
In my mind, to forgive is to realize that I don't have to punish someone for their offense, I give it to God to do that.  I cannot condemn them, God does.  I "pardon" them, because I can do nothing else.  The "forget" part of the equation simply means that I don't have to dwell on the offense any longer... it's out of my hands and will do me no good to continually remember the offense over and over again.  That doesn't mean I have to stay in an abusive situation... I have to do what's best for me and what God has led me to do.  It means I acknowledge the pain that it caused, I deal with that pain through my own healing, and I move on.  What's best for me is to not seek to personally punish someone, not dwell on how someone should be punished, and not dwell on the offense.  What's best for me is to heal and find the happiness that God's wants for me.

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blunk

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Re: Thoughts on forgiveness . . .
« Reply #39 on: October 14, 2014, 01:43:28 PM »
Ok I'm not a particularly religious person, but this is a topic that I have struggled a lot with. I forgave more than my share of wrongs, and once they were forgiven I did my best not to bring them up again. My stbxh would claim to have forgiven my wrongs, but brought them up every time he became upset (different topic).

The final straw for me was when he called me names,  said horrible hateful things to me, and then said I hope you die. I was devastated, and told him that if I were to forgive him he would have to promise never to spew that kind of hate at me ever again. His answer was, "I'm an a $$ hole, thats all I'm ever going to be, I'm never going to change". I was shocked,  but continued to work to find forgiveness.

Then one night while he was at work I was watching MASH on tv. The story was about a soldier who took a dead man's dog tags to try to get home. He confessed to the priest, and asked for forgiveness. He asked the soldier to return to his group and assume his true identity. The man refused, saying that he had found his way home, and that he wasn't hurting anyone. His answer was that he would be hurting the man's family,and that he could not offer forgiveness for a sin the man did not intend to stop committing.

I know it's just a silly tv show, but I sat on my couch and cried my eyes out. That was exactly what I had been trying myself to do. My h had no intention of changing, and I knew that, and that moment was when I knew that I could not forgive him again.