Are you a single Catholic? Meet Your Match Today [close]

Divorce & Annulments

As we get closer to Advent and the end of the liturgical year in the Church, I like to focus on the forgiveness aspect of rebuilding your life after divorce. It seems to be an insurmountable issue for many people. If you at least try, forgiveness can be a life-changing event. It can mean the difference between hiding out and waiting for the holidays to be over, and really, truly having a reason to celebrate and experience the joy of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s. So, I’d like to share a personal story with you in hopes that it will better illustrate my point:

 

You probably remember the D.C. Sniper team from 10 years ago. It was a terrible time for citizens of that city, as well as for other victims in different states who where killed as the snipers made their way up the East Coast. I’ll never forget hearing the incredible statement a particular guest on FOX News gave one evening as I was making dinner.

 

The two suspects had been captured and were about to be charged. A FOX News show host happened to be interviewing the husband of one of the victims who had been killed in Alabama. The anchorman asked this man if he felt the death penalty was the right kind of justice to avenge his wife’s murder. His answer was, “No. I’d like to see them go to jail and be given the chance to be rehabilitated.”

 

The anchorman was incredulous and replied, “But sir, your wife was murdered by these two monsters. Don’t you think the punishment should fit the crime?”

 

The husband’s reply was simply, “I don’t need retribution. These guys should have the chance to make themselves right with God and go to heaven.” It was such a bold (and true) statement that I applauded right there in my own kitchen. It’s not often these days that we see such blatant examples of true Christianity.

 

We all have to forgive and we have to do it from our hearts. Deep hurts and wounded hearts need TLC, no doubt but in the end the best medicine for suffering due to injustice is forgiveness.

 

I hope that if there is anyone in your life who has hurt you and you are harboring resentment or anger toward them that you will consider asking God for the grace to forgive them. It will truly make a difference in your life and free you from the things that are holding you back.

 

(This post has been read 1,072 times)

12 Comments

  1. Stephen-725391 November 15, 2012

    Lisa,

    Certainly clarifies Practice Forgiveness Every Day! It’s something you for yourself, to free yourself from their grasp, isn’t that the real benefit? You can then begin to live again. Thanks.

    Stephen

  2. Brendan-824174 November 15, 2012

    This is so true when you drop that feeling of anger, and let it go you feel so much better. It took me a long time to follow that advice. Once I began to forgive past hurt you feel a lot better, and realize there are a lot bigger problems in the world than being emotionally hurt by someone you cared deeply about. Thanks for the posting.

  3. Omar-727486 November 15, 2012

    It is the Key to everything. Clear mind, stress out, anger, FEAR….I believe it is the basis of our religion and religions….once you forgive, you smile again…

  4. Boris-903314 November 16, 2012

    Forgiveness is not a feeling it is a decision, an act often undeserved to someone, there is the grace, the special pedagogy. Forgiveness does not justify the action, is not forgotten unless you bump your head :) . It is a gift beyond what is deserved, that’s why the Lord says forgive 70 times 7. Forgiveness does not remove the wrong attitude, does not remove the responsibility of the offender, or denied justice. So forgiveness is a gift, because I do not expect anything in return. I forgive because God give me blessings for this “heroic” act . Something that helped me was to change my will and do it for the love of God through others. If I do not forgive I will not have healthy relationships, friendly, with my partner and family. Forgiveness is a door to be healthy. “Therefore I tell you, all that you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it and it shall be yours. When you stand to pray, forgive anyone against whom you have a grievance, so that you heavenly Father may in turn forgive you your transgressions. ” Mark 11:24-26. Each Bible verse is a promise that our dear Lord Jesus gave us as a gift, that means I can use it in my prayer to apologize not only to me but to others as well, and be fulfilled. As I learned more about it of forgiveness, I understand that there are three levels of forgiveness. The first is Forgiving God, not because God has done something wrong, but because we believe that God did something wrong. God is not to blame for anything. The second is to forgive others, forgive my parents, no one is born knowing how to be father. Forgive my friends for their treachery or disloyalty, forgive everyone in general even the priests. The third is Forgive me, if I do not forgive myself then who will forgive me?. If I do not forgive myself, I can not forgive God and can not forgive others.

    How will I know when I have forgiven? I understood that when you heals wounds do not see the faults of people, but the good things of any person. When I forgive I can remember without pain.

    When I started to forgive everyone, without exception, the premise was apologizing for forgiveness. Sometimes I did physically with people who did not see or saw and other times I did it only in the most holy sacrament of the altar in the presence of God and our dear mother the Blessed Virgin Mary, the confession to the sacrament of confession also helped me a lot!.. On other occasions used two chairs, stood looking at one another, I sat in one and I imagined the other person in front of me, and our dear Jesus Christ in the middle of the two of us. I asked the Lord patiently, slowly, to help me remember what I had to apologize, and was beginning to remember, asked forgiveness for what I did to hurt the heart of that person, then I forgiven for injuries that person did to me and then I start to think I’m embracing that person with all the love in my heart. I did everything calmly, without haste. I was gradually taking off the “backpack of potatoes” I was carrying in the back for years;).

    From there I think I have to live to the best of me as “the flower that after having trodden its aroma is maintained.” That is to forgive.

    May our Lord Jesus Christ richly bless you and your whole family, and these lines will help to heal your heart because in the end it is for God, Glory to God! :) Pax Vobis.

  5. Theodore-903474 November 17, 2012

    Forgiveness, Justice , Mercy , Hope.
    How do we wish to be forgiven? In our theology we must ask for forgiveness, contrition, in order for God by our belief, to grant forgiveness.
    The true judgment of our Lord is in the heart of hearts. So it begs the question of contrition. An all knowing all loving all seeing God and only God knows the heart of hearts. In this, then , could it be the requirement for an act of contrition be to serve forgiving self?
    If there is no transgression in the conscious mind and only the guilt of the rule we broke then how sincere is the contrition? And how is the judgment we ask assessed? Does the judgment we invoke reflect the judgment we beg to be measured by? Many evoke the exclamation “don’t judge!” The truth is in the words “…and forgive us our trespasses AS we forgive those who trespass against us.”
    If we are willing to take the justice we wish to give then we must be willing to live in the consequences as we have demonstrated.
    And the greatest oxymoron of our time is Pro Life Pro Death Penalty.

  6. Ginny-918551 November 17, 2012

    How true. I always have forgiven people but it was devastating losing spouse who made the wrong decision throughout his life. Pray that he would enter Heaven and help our family here. How would you ask or pray that he would forgive you for not communicating to him when he needed you the most.

  7. Imelda-915694 November 17, 2012

    Forgiveness takes time, but it will set you free.

  8. David-903579 November 18, 2012

    Lots of wisdom in these posts. God bless you all.
    Betrayal is tough, and separation from a loved one is painful, especially someone who you really cared deeply for. The miscommunication, the misunderstandings, the presumption, the lack of respect or concern of one human being for another, the swirl of emotions, etc., all add to the pain. If you have suffered real heart break in your life, you have but tasted the pain of the cross. Jesus was in physical agony on the cross, but he was heart broken as He knew the sin and the betrayal of each one of us, even as he watched us lovingly each step of our lives, only to see us choose selfishness and sin over Him. This pain was far worse than the excruciating pain of the flesh He experienced. But He loved us in spite of our weakness, even as we hammered in the nails or spat in his face (deliberate sin). That love is salvific and unconditional. Forgiveness is love poured out for another, and it is redemptive. Only Jesus can forgive, and His presence in our hearts will enable us to show that same mercy and forgive, just as we have been forgiven ourselves. Not only can we forgive, but we can offer up that innocent suffering in Christ, for healing or for a special intention, or through the Immacuate Heart of Mary for the greatest effect. To the extent we choose to do this, is the extent souls will be saved.

    • Kim-794138 November 18, 2012

      That is by far and away the most beautiful thing I have ever read. Thank you for posting and for sharing your wisdom! Peace!

  9. Melanie-909576 November 18, 2012

    “People would rather die than forgive, it’s that hard.” The Secret Life of Bees.

  10. Ginny-918551 November 18, 2012

    I am in a dilemma. Although, I have forgiven my spouse for his past transgression and excepted his marriage proposal only he betrayed me again w/lies. Although, I have a place next to him, so the only thing that troubles me is being buried next to him which is not by natural causes. Would it be wrong for me to be buried in different cemetery since I feel so uncomfortable and the fact that I do not feel like being his wife.

    Does this mean that I haven’t forgiven him because he abandon twice with his indiscretion this is the reason why I do not want to be buried next to him. Doesn’t matter at this point where any one decides to be buried. I would like to make the proper decision.

  11. Ted-921153 November 29, 2012

    There are many great examples of forgiveness. probably the greatest is the act of Jesus on the cross. I also wanted to ask the folks who read this if you have heard of the forgiveness given by a survivor of the Rwandan genocide. I first learned about her story when I read her book, “Left to Tell”.

    She was also interviewed this evening on EWTN by Fr. Mitch Pacwa along with a man who made a documentary of her story and of her return to her country to revisit the sites where her parents and siblings were murdered in the genocide. She lives in the US now. She actually confronted the murderer of her parents, killed brutally with a machete, and forgave him. Read how this was made possible. It will inspire you as it has me.

    If you are interested and have never heard or read her story or if you want to know more you can go to her website at http://www.immaculee.com/. Her name is Immaculee Ilibagiza. Her story is a constant source of inspiration to me.

Post a comment

To post your comment please login:

-OR-