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mandelaforgiveTO MY FRIEND WHO WROTE TODAY ABOUT FORGIVENESS: Unless you are just a vindictive person, it is in the heart of every one of us to want to forgive those who sincerely seek it. The problem is that we are also spiritually responsible to forgive those who don’t ask for it and that is a hard thing for us to comprehend because a lot of us have a twisted view of what forgiveness really is.

Forgiveness is not about forgetting what the other person did. It isn’t about letting them off the hook. Forgiveness requires accountability. A lot of times we have a hard time forgiving because the other person does not want to claim responsibility and so we hold a grudge. In reality, we are hurting ourselves more than we are the other person because we are now giving a portion of our lives to a negative circumstance when that energy should be given to people and things much more worthy. That is why Jesus said pray for your enemies. That is why it is also written, “vengeance is mine saith the Lord, I will repay”.

When someone is unrepentant, you still must free yourself by realizing that what they think they are getting away with, is between them and God- whether you call it God or Karma, or something else, nobody gets off easy even if it looks like it at first or even for a long time. But even if the person does claim responsibility, like in the matter you presented, and you told them you forgive, your question now is, why do you feel like and they feel like you have lied and are still holding it over them?

The answer is that in order for forgiveness to be complete, you must also be accountable to your role in what transpired. Now I know that sounds odd because it appears as though I am saying you are in part to blame for circumstances you feel you didn’t ask for. But that is not what I am saying at all. So, for a moment, let’s look at a different situation.

When I was young, I loved to skateboard. Just outside of the hood they paved a new road going to some storage units. The road was still closed and me and my brother went up there. He rode his bike and I was on my skateboard. We had the bright idea of tying a rope to the bike seat so he could pull me. We tried it a few times but I wasn’t strong enough to hold on. So we two idiots came up with the idea to tie the rope around my waist. Y’all already know what happened. LOL. If you look close enough, there are scars from childhood all over my body from me falling off that thing while he was peddlin full speed.

For a while, the pain of that experience made me angry at him even though he was sorry he didnt see me losing my balance. But my anger and fear did not subside until I took a look at my own decisions, the things, I overlooked and also took for granted, the wisdom I needed to learn from it in order to be at peace getting back on that skateboard and trusting my brother again. You see, whether he apologized or not, my ability to move on, ultimately, rested within me, and not within his words.

A lot of unforgiveness is not anger or mistrust of the other person, but it is our minds protecting us from ourselves when we have failed to look at the wisdom it needs us to learn from the circumstance. The other person is still human. Just because they apologize don’t mean every weakness that played into what hurt you is suddenly past. So that means it is your responsibility to help them and your own situation by recognizing how to avoid them hurting you and you playing a role in hurting that way again even if your initial role was being ignorant.

And they should want to talk about it if they are truly repentant. But when you just try to say “I love you” and not really deal with it, the process of forgiveness was never completed and just like when the doctor tells you to finish all 7 days of an antibiotic even if you feel better or it will come back worse, the same thing happens when you don’t talk things totally through together and with yourself. All transgressions are an infection and cannot be treated like a common cold, unless you want your relationship to end up dead. -NEO BLAQNESS