Saturday, September 10, 2011

Forgiveness Is Not What I Was Taught

Through my searches on the internet, I found this great video about Forgiveness.  Forgiveness for me was taught in the Baptist Church but it was their view of it, not necessarily what forgiveness means.

It was used more as a weapon of control, after the monster beat my mom and whipped the daylights out of us.  It was used as a weapon of control as we sang praises in church while the monster sat close by after the night of showing God's love to us in our bedrooms.  I could go on of course, but hopefully you get the idea of how forgiveness was taught in our home.

I still remember one time in a church service after I was recovering from paralysis that they had me come to the front of the church.  They asked me to pray and forgive the monster.  At that time, I was not even sure what I was praying for.  I actually think that it meant more to the people who were praying over me than it did to my life.

With time, I began to understand forgiveness more and especially it wasn't to let the monster off the hook for what he had done, but to begin releasing it within myself.  It wasn't about just saying a prayer and poof, everything was better.  It wasn't just about thinking happy thoughts and acting as if everything was good.

At the taping of the Oprah Show last November, I heard something about forgiveness that truly made sense to me.  This was something that Oprah said had meant so much to her.  "Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different."

Forgiveness is about releasing and letting go within yourself  of events that you had no control over.  It is giving up the hope that your past could have been different.  It is not about the person that did something to you, but how you release it and let the effects of it go within you.  

Take a moment and watch the YouTube Video.  It is very good.  If you are struggling with the concept of forgiveness, don't push it too quickly.  Allow it to happen in the right time.  Just don't stop the processing of getting to that point.  

YouTube Video:  Forgiveness And The Freedom Of Letting Go

Related Blog Posts:
1)  Family And Forgiveness (July 6, 2011)
2)  Oprah, 200 Men Emmy Award (May 7, 2011)

Blog Post & Images (c) 9/5/11 Don Shetterly - use by permission only

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