#5: Resolution Is Essential
When you experience death, you WILL have people to forgive.
I wrote recently about some “Job friends” related to my death experience. Several asked if I resolved my issues with them. The answer is both yes and no. Yes, I have forgiven them. I have moved on in life, figuratively and literally. At the same time, I find it essential that I continue to deal with the recurring reality of what happened as well as the ancillary issues.
Until you forgive and move on, you will remain stuck in the midst of your emotional malaise. Illness of the soul is as debilitating (if not more) than any physical problem. When a major event occurs, a life changer (you may go through life and not have one of these), forgiveness must be dealt with over the long haul.
Forgiveness is a process, rarely an event.
It takes a while to move through the gyrations of forgiveness. I’m not sure there are universal steps in this. I’ve read books about forgiveness from people who are well-intentioned. They typically provide readers with steps to follow in order to “completely and utterly forgive” and move on in life. I’m not sure God has simple steps he wants us to follow to gain freedom. Yes, he has in mind that we gain freedom from the chains that bind us. Forgiveness is typically drawn out over a period of time, at least when we are dealing with major life-changing events.
Forgiveness is repetitive.
On life-changing events that go haywire, you will have to forgive repeatedly. Our souls have a way of being disappointed at deep levels. They are slow to snap back to their original states. In the meantime, you will need to forgive over and over. Don’t pay attention to simple-minded people who say idiotic, simplistic things like, “You haven’t really forgiven if that issue is still alive in your heart.” The fact that the original issue is still alive doesn’t mean that you didn’t forgive or that you haven’t dealt with it. It simply evidences that you have deep feelings. You have work to do still as you peel the onion another layer deeper. Remember, it’s an onion, not an apple.
Forgiveness requires divine intervention.
If the Holy Spirit doesn’t empower us we won’t have the wherewithal to move forward. He is the only force who can give us the power and perspective we need to let go.
We have steps to take in the process of seeking and gaining forgiveness. Yet we have to realize that our only hope lies in God showing up and doing the real work of bringing freedom. In the end, our strategy is the simple prayer, “Lord have mercy.”