Dr. Leah Riddick Cunningham

Healing Begins with Forgiving NOT Forgetting!

Too often it is thought that if we could just forget, about some tragic, horrible, earth-shattering and life altering time in our lives then we would be ok. Only to find out that we remember way more than we want to and forgiveness is the furthest thing from our minds.

So, what is it that we need to understand? First let’s agree, that by forgiving we are certainly NOT condoning, agreeing, approving, permitting, allowing or accepting anything that was wrongfully and willfully done to us or against us! ABSOLUTELY NOT!! What we are saying is that we need to position ourselves to move forward–we must forgive! Especially when we think we can’t. That is the situation we need to spend most of our time at trying to forgive. Because if we don’t it will only work against us!

So, we position ourselves to move forward through forgiveness. You see forgiveness is freeing! It allows you to release and relinquish the person, persons, situation or experience, from your mind and spirit. Forgiveness is letting go of guilt, shame, resentment, fear, anger and hatred. Did you notice it had nothing to do with forgetting? The “act of forgiveness” requires that we place the whole situation into the hands of God, take our hands off of it and WALK AWAY! Then the “process of forgiveness” is remembering to forgive each and every day until we no longer need to do so again!

But here is the main point—- as some of us begin to work at learning how to forgive, let our first project be aimed at learning how to forgive the person we look at everyday in the mirror– ourselves!! Some of us are holding unforgiveness against ourselves way too long. We have allowed some of our past experiences become a lifetime sentence, and it isn’t! It is only an experience, good, bad or indifferent.  If we could take it back, we most likely would, but we can’t, it’s not in our power to do so. So, the next best thing for something we can’t take back is to let it go!  Because, what is in our power to do so, is letting today become the first day when you look in the mirror and tell that person—–I forgive you!

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