Let me start off by saying I got three hours of sleep last night. Yes, Mom and Dad, I know that’s not enough, and trust me, after today, I won’t make a habit of it. Part of me wants to go to sleep right now, but the other part of me, probably compelled by some mixture of coffee and the Holy Spirit feels the need to write. So here I am, writing once again. Please bear with me as I ramble for the next few paragraphs, for anyone that knows me, knows sleepy Taryn is like no other.
Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. -Ephesians 4:32
I have had to wrestle with the idea of forgiveness for some time now. A while ago, someone hurt me. The who or the how is unimportant. Just know I was hurt, and it was big and that we are called to forgive. I was pissed.
While I was throwing myself a pity party for how unfair life, I thought back to Jesus, and his forgiveness. I wondered if this is what Jesus felt like (probably not, because ya know, God), but it made me appreciate it. How often during the course of even one day do I purposefully disobey God? Do I turn my back on Him? It dawned on me, I’m probably not one to talk. I am forgiven daily for the many ways that I hurt the One who loves me most. If there was a limit to God’s forgiveness, I would have reached it a long time ago. This is the beautiful thing, in the Lord’s eyes, I am still His perfect Daughter, His beloved, the one who He delights in no matter what I do. The Lord gently grabbed a hold of my heart and reminded me of His forgiveness. Its something that can never be earned.
If we are called to forgive as Christ forgave us, then I must die to myself and forgive in the same grace-filled way Jesus did for me.
I got to that point a while ago. I knew I needed to forgive, yet every time I tried, I was just angry all over again. I mean, I have never felt this deep rage before. I wish I was exaggerating. I literally wanted to punch everybody in the face. I felt so stuck, in this place of knowing I needed to forgive, yet not being able to. I was so annoyed because I wasn’t able to handle this perfectly (refer back to previous post). If I know truth then I should walk in it no problem.
Again, gently and slowly the Lord reminded me of truth. I was trying to give Jesus-sized forgiveness out of my measly five-foot-nothing flesh. I was relying on myself to do something only the Lord can do. I only have the capacity to forgive because of Christ, and Christ alone.
So last night I finally forgave. I mean actually, like we talked and everything. The conversation was filled with Truth and Grace. The Lord guided me in how to forgive with Christ’s forgiveness. Which, I learned, doesn’t mean just ignoring what happened and acting like I’m fine so the other person feels better . It means speaking honestly about the pain because it is not irredeemable, nothing in this world is. If I walk in that, I can talk about it freely because it does not define me. We are freely forgiven by the grace of God, and are able to freely forgive others.
This is not to say I have it figured out and know exactly how to move forward. But I’m excited to see what the Lord does. The Lord moves. In ways that are truly unbelievable. He forgives our crap-shows and gives us the strength to do the same for each other. He will guide me as I figure out how to move on. We can talk until way to late about something so hard and messy and feel “weirdly good” at the end of it. Not because we are anything special, but because knowing Jesus makes all the difference.