Do you have trouble forgiving? Does it become a matter of pride? Have you ever said, “I can’t let her get away with that?” Or, “I should teach him a lesson!” Have you thought, I don’t want to forgive because they will think I’m weak? Or maybe you’ve thought, if I forgive it means that what they did was acceptable. 

The truth is forgiveness means “I choose not to carry resentment any longer. I don’t want to give my time and energy to something/someone who doesn’t deserve it.” Forgiveness is not about the other person. S/he won’t know that I’ve forgiven. It’s totally an inside job--I release my anger because I no longer benefit from holding onto it. I’m ready for the next stage.

I need to be me fully.  I want to live with integrity and I can’t do that until I forgive. Forgiving opens spaces inside me which my resentment has closed.  

Forgiveness frees me. The person I forgive never knows that my outlook has changed. But I know.  Forgiveness removes all traces of what isn’t really me and what I don’t need to hold onto. Forgiveness cleans up my personal space.  I feel different, more myself.  After all, my job is to focus on my lifetime, not on anyone else. Forgiveness opens me to meet life this moment and to be fully present. 

I can forgive if I will. It’s a choice but it requires determination and perhaps re-affirmation of my intent. Why wouldn’t I forgive? It makes my life better. And in the end that’s my responsibility.