Yesterday, I discovered some communication that took a potshot at my work, which was very painful. I suppose the worst part of it was that I didn’t think it was so bad. I had the feeling I’d been getting the runaround in some way, which has really been frustrating, and quite frankly, unprofessional.
My husband encouraged me to forgive the person who hurt me, but honestly, I just could not find a way to. Not yet. I Corinthians 13: 4-8 lists the key qualities of love (which the followers of Jesus are supposed to live out):
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.
The NIV translation says this:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
On Sunday, my pastor preached a bit on forgiveness and said challenged the congregation:
Is it really forgiveness if you say, ‘Oh, I forgive you but you really hurt me!’ or ‘I forgive you but you have to pay’ or ‘I forgive you’ then bring the incident up again later? No, it’s not forgiveness.
I am not forgiving because I will talk about this again. I will bring this up again later. I currently am all the the things I should not be: irritable, resentful, unkind, impatient, self-seeking, and keeping a record of wrong, among many other things. My pastor said forgiveness is not a one-time act; it’s a process. I will need to forgive the person who hurt me again and again.
I just can’t right now. Not yet. But I am determined to.
And somehow, I’m supposed be thankful in all things, which actually, this situation has made a bit easy in that I’m thankful I will not have to interact with these people on a daily basis!