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When You Can't Get Forgiveness


“The secret of forgiving everything is to understand nothing.”  – George Bernard Shaw

It has been raining a lot lately in Belize. We are in rainy season and that’s what happens. Some things in life just are. No matter what happens. There is nothing to do about it. No matter what we think about it we can’t change it. As humans we get the false idea that we can control life and forget there is a higher order of things we don’t understand.

Wanting forgiveness is like this. Some people will not forgive you. No matter how much you ask. We all make mistakes but at times the mistake is hard to leave behind. So what do you do when you can’t get forgiveness?

An Acquaintance of mine lost a lot of money in a business deal with one of his friends. Not only did it ruin his friendship, but his financial losses left him in a hole with the sliding economy. He is quite bitter about it, and rightfully so. His friend has asked for forgiveness but he finds it hard to let go and he blames himself for getting involved in the deal in the first place. He is having a hard time forgiving himself. When mistakes occur we need to forgive ourselves first.

Every time you put yourself down for your failures, and beat your head saying, “ I can’t believe I did that, you are recreating your pain and living in the past. What you need to do is forgive yourself, forgive the other party and plan not to repeat the same mistake again. There is always risk in life, and you never know how it will turn out. When memories and past failures come back with emotional pain, you must forgive yourself just as you expect others’ forgiveness.

Be honest about your mistakes. Some people make jokes about race never thinking twice about it. They never think how it affects people around them. They feel it is all in good fun. Truth is everyone is sensitive in different ways and you never know who you are going to offend. We are all in process and never know when what we say and do will offend others. When someone makes you aware of how you have offended them choosing to apologize is a major step towards forgiveness.  When you take responsibility and are honest with your mistakes it allows others to heal even if they don’t acknowledge your apology.

Have an attitude of forgiveness every day. Sometimes it takes time to forgive and be forgiven. Every day you have to work at it especially when one person continues to offend. Constantly remind yourself that the competitor of forgiveness is fear and resentment and this is poison that affects you more than the other person. No matter how long it takes keep an open heart for love to heal your relationships by being patient with the ones you care for.

Don’t waste your energy trying to understand. When mistake happen and people get hurt, it’s tempting to try and figure out who to blame. But this is impossible sometimes because percentages do not make the past go away. Just like deciding how much you think it should rain you have no control over who has the most fault to bare. At times it is difficult to apologize for things that are outside our control but healing requires us to spend our energy restoring love in relationships rather than holding the poison of blame and resentment.

Below are the steps to gain forgiveness:
·         Forgive yourself
·         Use your experience as knowledge for your future
·         Be honest about your mistakes
·         Forgive everyday
·         Don’t try to understand what is outside of your control

Excerpt from “Secrets To Life Book” by Chris Emmanuel
Book available at Chris Emmanuel Art Gallery (Sunbreeze Hotel) and Pages Book Store

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