Thursday, January 3, 2013

My Resolution for the New Year

Years ago I was accused of a scandalous sin. The accusation left me shaken and angry. Why would people I considered friends accuse me of something I didn't do? Something so ugly?

I never had a chance to confront my accusers, but, in time, their motives were revealed, and someone who had believed their lies came to me, seeking forgiveness. I granted it without delay. I also forgave the liars and remembered their sin against them no more.

Sadly, there are people who refuse to forgive. Their mantra in life is: "You did me wrong, and you're gonna pay." They keep score, and keep track and keep waiting for judgment to rain on those who hurt them.

In his book, The Chief: A Memoir of Fathers and Sons, Lance Morrow writes: "Not to forgive is to be imprisoned by the past, by old grievances that do not permit life to proceed with new business. Not to forgive is to yield oneself to another's control... to be locked into a sequence of act and response, of outrage and revenge, tit for tat, escalating always. The present is endlessly overwhelmed and devoured by the past."

That is a powerful description of unforgiveness, and it's so very true. People who harbor grudges can't get on with today for hanging on to yesterday. It's a sad way to exist, and they hurt nobody but themselves. As Anne Lamott said, "Not forgiving is like drinking rat poison and then waiting for the rat to die."

I don't know what 2013 holds, but my resolution is to be slow to anger and quick to forgive. Life is short at best, and if I allow unforgiveness to rob me of a single day this year, that is one less day I have to live.

♦     ♦     ♦

“A life lived without forgiveness is a prison.”  ― William Arthur Ward

Linking to: Spiritual Sundays

11 comments:

  1. To not forgive others not only keeps a person captive, it separates him or her from God. Jesus said if we don't forgive others of their sins, He will not forgive us of ours.

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    1. A sad way to live and a sadder way to die.

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  2. Your post is right on!

    I realize that you were writing about it to make a point but I truly am sorry that you had to suffer from the hands of accusers. But God used it, even years later, to help all of us who read this.

    A post we should all keep close in thought--thank you!

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  3. Great job expressing and sharing your hurt.
    This is a touching post. I learned to forgive but it wasn't easy. It took awhile but OH... the peace.

    Sending you a hug for all your grief and sending you another hug to say, well done.

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  4. I was just talking about this very thing this morning to my daughter and told her that cultivating the discipline of forgiveness (and also just letting an offense slide) was worth the effort.

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  5. A good word for the new year-- "slow to anger and quick to forgive". Thank-you for your post!

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  6. A very good way to live~ slow to anger and quick to forgive....Enjoyed your post very much. God bless 2013!

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  7. I like Lance Morrow's description of unforgiveness. He hits the nail on the head! How much easier it is to forgive and be free of the weight of that burden. Great post...thought provoking!

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  8. Thank you for reminding us. True forgiveness comes from a heart that has received lots of forgiveness and grace from our Pappa God, for we cannot give what we have not first received from Him! Nice meeting you at Laura's.
    Much love
    Mia

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  9. I love your resolution and wish more people would pursue it.

    May your life and the lives of those around you be blessed by your willingness to forgive!

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  10. I truly enjoyed reading this! So glad to be back blogging. Ive missed it! Yes, to not forgive & let go is simply trapping yourself in a self-imposed prison. And the only one suffering is you yourself!

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