Lovepedia The power of forgiveness


The power of forgiveness

It takes effort to ask for forgiveness, just as it does to forgive someone. And yet an honest effort at reconciliation is the recipe for happiness in any relationship! The Christian faith has forgiveness in its very DNA.

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Love lives on forgiveness.

The fact is that: In every relationship, sooner or later you hurt the other person – and you get hurt. If there was no forgiveness, a dark cloud of past memories would always hover over love and ultimately destroy it. Forgiving yourself from the bottom of your heart and forgiving the other person completely is the royal road to lasting love. But living a reconciled life is not always easy! Strictly speaking, the willingness to forgive exceeds a person’s natural capacity for love.
Being able to forgive wholeheartedly means striving again and again for selfless love. Love that is unconditional. Love that does not stop loving even when it hurts. Love that gives itself: ”No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (John 15:13) This devotion does not always have to mean physical life. Valuing others more than oneself, giving up something out of love for others, letting go of something – that too can mean “laying down one’s life”. Devoted love does not come by itself. You have to strive for it, you have to practice it.

Jesus shows us how forgiveness works.

You become most like God when you mirror his merciful love by forgiving, but also by asking for forgiveness yourself. It is not worth delaying reconciliation. St. John of God sums it up aptly when he says: “Sooner or later I must forgive you, so I forgive you immediately!”
We know how to forgive from Jesus. He turned to sinners – even an adulteress – with special tenderness. No pointing a finger! No reproaches! This irritated many of his contemporaries: “If this man were a prophet, he would know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, that she is a sinner.” (Luke 7:39) Jesus also wants to lift you up again and show you the way to happiness. He loves you! And because God loves you so much, you can also begin to treat yourself with kindness. Just like you would treat your best friend! God knows you better than you know yourself. Only he knows who you really are!
With the certainty that God does not condemn you, it will also become increasingly easier for you not to condemn yourself. In addition, the Catholic Church offers you a secret recipe: In the sacrament of reconciliation, you can take your wounds to Jesus and let him heal you. In holy confession, you are given a new life through the merciful love of God.

If you are ready to forgive, you are already forgiving.

We know that without forgiveness, there is no peaceful future, no lasting relationship. But what is it like when you want to forgive but cannot? It is not easy to forgive, especially when the consequences of injustice that has been done to you are visible or permanently noticeable. For example, how can people who have been abused by their caregivers forgive? Who have been sexually abused? Or people who have never experienced what family is? How can the many long-suffering people who have lost their loved ones in wars or under dramatic circumstances forgive?
Looking at the many dramas that plague humanity, you may have asked yourself: “How could God let this happen?” Reconciliation does not happen from one day to the next. Reconciliation is a process. Feelings often call for retribution and blame. However, if you want to forgive, you have already forgiven! You can give your wounded heart the time it needs to heal the pain! Pain does not diminish forgiveness. On the contrary, it gives you the opportunity to renew and deepen the forgiveness you have already granted. Through the willingness to forgive, your love unfolds.
God still works miracles today – in your heart, in your family and in your relationships. Provided you get involved with him. He will make all things new!