As We Forgive Others…

I’ve been reading some psychology articles on forgiveness recently, and I’m impressed by the amount of data that suggests that forgiveness is good for you.There was even some hint of a debate that says we forgive for one of two reasons: 1. It makes us feel better, or 2. It’s the right thing to do.

Why can’t it be both? I mean, doing the right thing should make us feel better, right? And whether purging our hearts of resentment and hurt restores a damaged relationship, or merely releases us from the weight of a damaged ego, either way it’s good, right?

People who forgive sleep better, digest their food more efficiently, and maybe even eliminate one more cause of high blood pressure. I know there are many self-help gurus who talk about both the emotional and physical benefits of  forgiveness, but there is an enormous spiritual benefit as well. Forgive us as we forgive others.

This might be the original win-win.

Pray about it…

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Published in: on February 24, 2013 at 4:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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and forgive us…

The case for justice largely depends on whether you’re receiving it or dishing it out. The last time I was stopped by traffic police I was far more interested in mercy than justice. And let’s be honest, if mercy and forgiveness were as effective as we wished, judges would simply say to criminals “OK you’re forgiven! Now aren’t you ashamed of yourself? Well, you just go home and feel guilty for a few years and that’ll teach you!”

Guilt is only a motivator if you get caught. That’s why believing that God is always watching you is so important. If he’s not who cares? One of my favorite scenes in a movie is from Oh Brother Where Art Thou? when Delmar gets saved and baptized and proclaims he’s been forgiven of holding up a Piggly Wiggly. Everett reminds him that while he might be “square with the Lord,” the great state of Mississippi takes a different view.

Self accusation, guilt, negative internal dialogue, whatever you choose to call it, it all stands in the way of your being in clear contact with the Father Creator. And it only changes things from your perspective. God was aware before you were that you can sever or “pinch yourself off” from the stream of receiving.  I love what comedian Mark Lowery says about God’s knowledge: “Does it ever occur to you that nothing occurs to God?” He has a solution.

So why do you need forgiveness? Because you have a conscience and you know right from wrong. And because you are spirit traveling around in the flesh you’re going to trespass occasionally. A very expensive sacrifice was made on your behalf to clear the way for you to accept the blessings intended for you.

Accept it and get on with your life.

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Published in: on November 12, 2009 at 10:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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