A story tells that two friends were walking through the desert. During some point of the journey they had an argument, and one friend slapped the other one in the face.
The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, wrote in the sand:
TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SLAPPED ME IN THE FACE.
They kept on walking until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath. The one who had been slapped got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but the friend saved him.
After he recovered from the near drowning, he wrote on a stone:
TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SAVED MY LIFE.
The friend who had slapped and saved his best friend asked him, “After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand and now, you write on a stone, why?”
The other friend replied “When someone hurts us we should write it down in sand where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But, when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone where no wind can ever erase it.”
LEARN TO WRITE YOUR HURTS IN THE SAND AND TO CARVE YOUR BENEFITS IN STONE.
Forgiveness is difficult. And confusing.
First clarification: Forgiveness is different from Friendship. When you forgive someone, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be friends with him again. Forgiveness and friendship are two different things that require two different decisions. Don’t confuse the two. Second clarification: Don’t rush to forgive if the wound is grave. When the hurt is very deep, don’t forgive right away. When someone hurts you deeply, God doesn’t require that you forgive right away. When your husband commits adultery, or when an uncle molests you, or when a friend betrays you…. God doesn’t require that you drive out your feelings of anger “right now”. Why? Because we’re not robots with push buttons on our chest. In fact, God knows that we need to get angry for a while as part of our healing. By getting angry, we restore our dignity. By getting angry, we love ourselves. By getting angry, we say, “What you did to me was terribly wrong. You violated me.” I repeat: The process of getting angry (for a while) is part of your healing. Anger is like a medicine with an expiration date. Before that expiration date, anger is medicine. After that expiration date, anger becomes poison. At the right time, God will ask you to surrender your anger.
Let go and forgive, God will be your vindicator. God saw you when you were offended, abandoned and hurt. Let God handle your case. Put the situation in His hands and you will receive double than what you’ve lost . He’ll make your wrongs right. He’ll return what the enemy has stolen. He’ll even the score. If you want to be happy in your life, you need to have a forgiving attitude. Why? Because you live amidst imperfect people. You were born into an imperfect family, with imperfect parents, with imperfect siblings. Announcement: You’re imperfect too! (Unless you happen to be a perfect alien from a perfect planet.) Everyday, you’ll get hurt. Someone will step on your toe. Someone will stab your back. Someone will kick your behind. Someone will prick your pride. Someone will slander your name. That’s why Jesus said, forgive seventy times seven. (Matthew 18:21-22) That number is a Biblical symbol for “forever”. Believe me, if you don’t have a forgiving attitude, you can’t enjoy any imperfect relationship.
Unforgiveness is taking matters in your hands. Forgiveness is taking matters into God’s hands. Let’s forgive, move on with our life and let God pay you. And bless all those who have offended you. And believe that you’ll receive double of what you have lost.