Forgiveness Is A Gift

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Editor:

To the young woman who was molested: The only way you can survive this without being scathed is through forgiveness. In the past, I have worked with many who have suffered your experience. One was the victim of both her father and her grandfather. I told her she would have to forgive them.

She was shocked that I would suggest such an action, and she let me know it would be a long time before that ever happened.

"Does this mean it will be a long time before you feel any better?" I asked.

Then I reminded her that forgiveness was not the same thing as approval of wrong and/or criminal behavior. I also shared with her that forgiveness was not a gift she was giving to her perpetrators, but was instead a gift she was giving to herself. "You will never be able to get on with your life or enjoy any real happiness until and unless you can do this," I concluded.

Sometimes when it seems too much to ask and it feels like an impossibility, I have asked God to do the forgiving for me. It is a good first step. If you cannot do this, then he wins. Don't let that happen.

Pat Rollins, Payson

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