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Cost of Forgiveness

June 10, 2013

“Here we come back to the point I made earlier about forgiveness: it releases not only the person who is being forgiven but the person who is doing the forgiving.”[1]

If you are holding a grudge against someone who wrongs you, you are binding yourself into that hostility. It is a physical and spiritual binding. This binding interferes with your spiritual life. It can affect your health as it can bring along high blood pressure and weight gain. It interferes with your objectivity as it becomes a dark filter you run your experiences through.

Look at the generational conflicts which occur. This can be seen in international relations. Take North and South Korea as an example. They are over 50 years into this conflict. Each side will negotiate but neither will forgive the other for a particular wrong. South Africa is the opposite. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission was conducted at the end of apartheid and was a restorative process. Confessions were given by those who inflicted harm and the victims, or in many cases the family of the victims, gave forgiveness. While not perfect, it was an excellent effort to free the offenders, victims and South Africa from the lingering damage of harm from the actions under apartheid.

Think about your life today. Who are you holding a grudge against? Are you ready to free yourself from being captive to that anger and hate? Step out, deliver forgiveness, and move forward. Forgiveness and grace are powerful healers. So go get healed!

[1] N.T. Wright. Evil and the Justice of God. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Books, 2006. 159

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