Saturday, April 25, 2009

Being Forgiven

My mother told us often, "never let the sun go down on your wrath." For me, this meant sometimes sitting up for hours pondering my reaction to siblings and realizing that it was I who needed to apologize, even if they didn't. It would be 2:00 in the morning on a school day and I would not apologize OR sleep.

I would reason that they too had done and said things that they shouldn't have. Why should I apologize only? But I often found myself in their rooms in the wee hours of the morning asking for forgiveness. They would readily forgive me. I would kiss them on the cheek each time. My mother would have us do this even after a heated disagreement. This was a healing process, even when as kids we balked, but planted the kiss anyway, often hurriedly.

My siblings were always kind and responded well to my waking them up. But it's funny. Many times I thought that they owed me an apology but they were often sound asleep. That was OK. I just couldn't have such on my conscious and sleep peacefully.

Over the years I practiced getting my emotions in control and also readily asking for forgiveness when it was necessary for me to do. I even learn to do so even when it wasn't necessary. This was probably equally as healing. Practice doesn't make perfect, but it makes better.

Today I am a better person after having been forgiven and practicing forgiveness. Being forgiven and practicing forgiveness matters. It makes the difference for you and others, even if it doesn't seem so at the moment. My siblings and I are very close for having learned the lessons of forgiveness. We also typically forgive others readily. There are no perfect people.

Forgive. You will one day need to be forgiven.


Brosreview said...

I loved this piece Judith!!! I could recall my stubborn moments in the past where I would find it hard to forgive.

"Practice doesn't make perfect, but it makes better." - I readily agree!!!

"Forgive. You will one day need to be forgiven." - This is what my dad told me that completely changed my attitude.

You remember my song, "Forgive to Forget", don't you? Yea, this reminded me of the same.

I can so relate to this one. Very nicely expressed!!!

CathM said...

A good reminder... that forgiveness is something our soul needs more than the other person that we are forgiving because unforgiveness erodes. I have struggled with unforgiveness in my life – although I am getting better at it... but I confess there are still a couple of people/events that I still struggle to forgive... so – it’s good to be reminded: “[Catherine]... Forgive. You will one day need to be forgiven.”

judith ellis said...

Thanks, Brosreview. Your dad is a wise man and you are blessed for having such a one to raise you. I don't remember your song. I've read so many. But I'll go back and re-read it, as I probably have done so already.

judith ellis said...

Catherine - Struggling with unforgivenss is quite common indeed. I decided very early on when I was about 10 to deal with this one. I must admit to never been terribly stubborn about it. I have always been rather cheery and rather prone to forgiveness. But there were those days, especially when I felt like I was wronged. You are so right about its corrosive nature. I have written of it here before in a post, Being a Forgiver. It's just better to forgive; forgiveness is also for the forgiver. Live. Let. Love.

The Write Girl said...

"Forgive. You will one day need to be forgiven."

Hey Judith, truer words couldn't be spoken. So many people hold onto the weight of guilt waiting to be forgiven. I think this is an important lesson to learn. Through forgiveness, we can live a fuller life

judith ellis said...

"So many people hold onto the weight of guilt waiting to be forgiven."

Hey The Write Girl - This reminds me of the importance of forgiving yourself too, not waiting for others to do so--especially when you have sought forgiveness.

"Through forgiveness, we can live a fuller life."

I love these words.

Thank you.