What’s in a word? I have been thinking a lot today, and yesterday, about forgiveness and forgiving. Jo asked us, separately, if we’d forgiven. I’ve been reading, and reflecting, and praying about this for weeks, and in the last two days had found myself wondering, what, exactly does it mean? So, I looked it up, and found this, on Merriam-Webster’s site:
Main Entry: for•give
Pronunciation: f&r-‘giv, for-
Inflected Form(s): for•gave /-‘gAv/; for•giv•en /-‘gi-v&n/; -giv•ing
Etymology: Middle English, from Old English forgifan, from for- + gifan to give
1 a : to give up resentment of or claim to requital for b : to grant relief from payment of
2 : to cease to feel resentment against (an offender) : PARDON
intransitive verb : to grant forgiveness
synonym see EXCUSE
– for•giv•able /-‘gi-v&-b&l/ adjective
– for•giv•ably /-blE/ adverb
– for•giv•er noun
One of the books I’d picked up, talked about it being a journey, a process, not a specific “thing” one can decide upon; Janet mentioned, and I’d also read, that frequently it’s an unknown occurrence, one just realizes at some point, that the resentment, the anger is dissipated, and the “story” no longer is an obsessive replay. They’re all very careful to point out that it doesn’t mean whatever is forgotten, merely that it’s lost it’s power to overwhelm. To teach, to grow, yes, but no longer overwhelm and make massive resentments.
Anger may return, for a long time, but the resentment, the obsessions, will fade.
Guess what? Along with the much more relaxed feelings I have toward Lynn’s friends, I realized as I was watching her play tonight, and this weekend, that I’m really a lot further along that road than I’d realized myself. I don’t know what triggered the reflections, nor does it matter, cuz I do realize that whenever it happened, however it occurred, much of my anger is gone, that I’m no longer as paranoid and worried about every little thing.
Wanna know a secret?
I forgive. I forgave.
This one, gets posted, for anyone and everyone to see. Some of my meanderings, I do for me, and delete, some I post, some are for a particular person, or whatever. This one, gets posted because I’ll shout to the world, that I forgive, and that’s a very, very wonderful thing.
I love you.