Forgiveness is often stated as the hardest thing to embrace, especially when it involves emotional, psychological or even physical trauma inflicted by another.
Have you ever heard someone, or you have said it yourself, “I could never forgive that person”? It’s as though forgiving lets the perpetrator off the hook.
We couldn’t be more wrong!
The truth about forgiveness is about setting you free! We, as human beings, are not designed to carry the burden of unforgiveness. It’s affects can be devastating for you the individual, but also for those around!
Unforgiveness leads to resentment and bitterness. “Persistent bitterness may result in global feelings of anger and hostility that, when strong enough, could affect a person’s physical health,” said psychologist Dr. Carsten Wrosch.
Chronic anger puts you into a fight-or-flight mode, which results in numerous changes in heart rate, blood pressure and immune response. Those changes, then, increase the risk of depression, heart disease and diabetes, among other conditions.
In addition, it affects us emotionally and emotions leak through our interactions with others. What we also don’t realise is that how we feel leaks without us even saying anything. Only 7% of communication is the spoken word, the rest is tonality and physiology. We carry an aura about us that either draws people or repels them.
Enniskillen, Northern Ireland
I remember back in 1987 the story of a bomb going off in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland. It devastated a community on a day when they were watching a Remembrance Day parade through their streets.
The media caught one particular story on that fateful day. It was of a father, Gordon Wilson and his daughter, Marie, who were impacted by the bomb going off behind a wall they just happened to be stood by. The wall collapsed fatefully wounding the man’s daughter and as he held her in his arms trying his best to comfort her, she died.
Later that day the BBC interviewed Gordon Wilson expecting to hear a man who had suffered tremendous loss, give an angry, bitter statement condemning those people who had planted the bomb. Instead they heard a humble and broken man forgive the bombers.
He, in no way condoned the bombing, instead he understood that by not forgiving the bombers it would have far greater damage on him, his family and the people of Enniskillen.
The press and many of the public who heard Gordon’s words that day could not grasp his response and accept it.
The reason was simple, we and many others have been sold a lie about forgiveness. By carrying unforgiveness we build around ourselves a prison far stronger than any prison ever built by man. We believe that by doing so we withhold relief from those who have caused us pain and/or trauma.
Truth about Forgiveness
The truth is that the perpetrators of our pain and/or trauma have possibly moved on with their life without any thought to what has happened whilst you and I remain stuck in the past with all the hurts that come with the memories.
Forgiveness is a lifestyle. It’s daily verbalising that you forgive the other until you have the memories, but the emotions are no longer there.
Forgiveness is not letting the other person off the hook. They are still answerable for what they said or did, but you are free to move on with your life. In the case of Gordon Wilson, he positively impacted other people’s lives too.
How long this takes is down to each individual. Some of us this may be a short period for others it may be much longer. But nevertheless, breakthrough will come if you persevere.
I speak as one who has had to forgive a number of times due because of the treatment by others. This also included rejection because of untruths another spoke.
I suffered physical symptoms requiring medication because of a psychological trauma I experienced with someone in a position of influence. I needed someone to talk to so I requested the help of a local counselling service. Having the benefit of someone to talk to I quickly felt my physical symptoms cease no longer requiring medication.
By taking this stance my physical, mental and emotional health positively benefitted and life is so much freer.
What to do next!
If this message has spoken to you but you find it hard to forgive, find someone you can confide in. Ask them if they would be prepared to walk this journey with you.
If you can’t find someone you can trust then please contact me, without any obligations, at AurumGold Ltd on tel: 01423 623641 or email: firstname.lastname@example.orgI would love to speak with you.