Oh, dear ones - that there could only be ONE hurdle in my life to jump. Alas, there are MANY and forgiveness is the hardest. Forgiving when the one who has hurt me isn't sorry. I had the blessing of reading the Five Love Languages of Apology http://garychapman.org/5ll-apology.htm and not only did this anointed writing teach me HOW to apologize, to truly be repentant but it taught me why "sorry" is NOT what I want to hear when my heart has been hurt, when angry words have been hurled my direction and when the sting of a bully's words resonate in my heart and mind many, many years later.
When I recall the abuse, the attack, the threat at knife point, the suicide note filled with anger and vitriole at me and my dad left by my son's father. I WANT SOMEONE TO TELL ME THEY ARE SORRY - THAT THEY DIDN'T REALIZE THE HURT, THE PAIN, THE WOUND!!!!! But I know that it is not coming. And the hot tears run down my face again as if the wound had just occurred and the sting is still the same.
Years ago I clipped an article from the late Irma Bombeck. Man, could that lady write!! She could make you laugh and cry in three sentences. I think I read everything by her I could get my hands on yet, one article is still floating around here that I am sure is yellowed with age. It is actually on paper! It is entitled "Children Put Their Faith in Apologies." It's true. They do. And WE TEACH THEM TO. I have taught my man-cubs, "Say you're sorry!" "Apologize!" and it was never sufficient for them, after the age of, oh, TWO, to simply mutter the word "sowwy." I wanted the man-cubs to understand that they had wronged another. That there needed to be an acknowledgment. A repentance. And forgiveness. IMMEDIATE forgiveness. Why can we do this with our kids but no one else? Because we birthed them and hence we KNOW how bent they are??? In the case of at least one of my cubs I KNOW THIS to be gospel. Poor boys, they come by their imperfections SO honestly. I gave them to them and I have NO choice but to forgive. They ARE, after all, mine.
My prayer, for me and for you is that we can truly forgive God's children even when they're not sorry. I pray that we can ask God, as Ezekiel did, to take hearts of stone and turn them to hearts of flesh. I am NOT good at this. Pray for me??? I'll be praying for me, too. And you. With His Love - For His glory. A2