The biggest struggle in my life is resentment. I have a hard time moving on when others have hurt me--intentionally or not. When I have been treated unfairly, I admit, I would love to get back at them. I want to do to them what they have done to me.
I will admit that there have been times that I have hurt others, but there have been a lot of mistakes made against me. If the person who wronged me doesn't pay or really seem sorry for what they have done, resentment creeps in my mind. I get upset all over again, even when I have moved on.
In my experience, it is a lot easier for the offender to move on than the one that has been hurt.
When I was younger, I was in a bad relationship that I tried to get out of, but EVERYONE said to stay. It was horrible. There was no physical abuse, but there are scars leftover from the emotional, mental, and spiritual abuse from that relationship. This experience has taught me:
- Just because I was young people assumed that they knew better than me. But, I knew what was best, and I should have done the right thing. It was so hard to have the world against me, but I should have listened to what God was saying to me.
- I was so hurt, by those who told me to stay with him and by him, but I had to forgive.
- God had to help me heal.
- They had NO problem forgiving themselves. They said I had to move on.
- Those who hurt me had NO problem moving on---they couldn't figure out why I had a hard time moving on.
- They had a responsibility to let me heal and allow me to tell them what they did to me. How can we learn? There is a right and wrong way to go about this, but I feel it would have been easier to handle. I had to let go before I was able to move on. I could not let the mistakes that I made or the mistakes of others hold me back. I would not have been able to get married.
Things I have learned:
- The hurt may linger, just don't let it ruin you.
- Scars are there, but you need to heal. This may be especially hard if there are life long consequences
- People who hurt you may not care and you need to learn to live with that
- Let it go and move on. If people don't care, that does not matter -- I sill need to let it go.
- Sorry might be the only thing they can offer. Some things can't be fixed, but stewing about it won't make it go away.
- I want them to have regrets, but that doesn't make me better or the situation better
- YOU MUST FORGIVE NO MATTER WHAT (Matt.6:15)
- Don't bring it up
- The relationship may not be the same. There is still forgiveness. You can have forgiveness without resentment and still remember.
If you have hurt people:
- OWN it. They may not forgive you, but do your part
- Be sincere.
- Offer ways to help, but it has to be practical.
- Relationship may not be the same
- They may need space whether it is to grieve or just cool off for awhile--give it to them. YOU have done your part.
- They may NEVER get over it, but as long as you did your part, forgive yourself and learn from this.
- Don't let them throw it in your face
Forgiveness needs to be more powerful then resentment. Forgiveness frees us to start healing and to really live. So, I choose forgiveness. How about you?