Sun or Shade?
Let’s talk about forgiveness. How many times a day do we receive apologies? Especially if you are married or have children. IT IS CONSTANT. I hear it so much that it doesn’t mean anything to me, OR I get upset when I don’t believe it to be heartfelt, OR, I know they are just going to do it again tomorrow.
Ever notice that the weight of forgiveness is often placed on the wrong person so that once they are said, they are FREE — COMPLETELY EXONERATED — from all wrongdoing. Then, they can dirty their clean slates again tomorrow, just in a slightly different way. Woohoo! Isn’t that the life?! Like confession, you go into a dark tiny room, or throw some bread into a body of water, ask for forgiveness, pray to whatever God you believe in, and start all over again.
I know I sound cynical, but I’ve been hurt before and have received the apology just for the person to hurt me the same way all over again. It’s also probably because I have kids and hear apologies all day long.
So besides being overwrought with apologies, why talk about forgiveness? Because, after all this time, I finally figured out forgiveness has absolutely nothing to do with the person apologizing and everything to do with the person hurt.
This enlightenment came to me via Abby Wambach on the podcast “We Can Do Hard Things”, episode 120 with the one and only Jen Hatmaker. Forgiveness is something that happens within our own selves, it’s letting go of an old wound, and it’s a lesson learned. It has nothing to do with trusting someone or something again. We should forgive for the health of our own mind, bodies, and souls. And hearing an apology should be just a bonus.
So, when my kid apologizes for the umpteenth time for not making his bed before he left the house, I need to learn from it. Maybe check his room before he leaves? Instead of getting upset and hurt every time he lets me down.
I think people need to understand this, especially if you are the one who has apologized and can’t understand why the other person hasn’t moved on.