DEAR X, You’re forgiven (the hardest post I’ve ever written)

Forgiveness is one of the few commandments that I have really argued with God about.  I would rather deal vengeance out in heavy doses myself.  In sharing this post, I am being so honest with you that even I am surprised by my own transparency.  But I feel that in my own honesty and the raw reality of my own struggle in this war, maybe you can grow too.

We all have that person, or in some cases those people, that we would love to see get a dose of their own medicine.  In my case, it was when my family came under fire and was attacked for no other reason other than the fact that someone didn’t like me.  They knew that the easiest way to get at me was to go after them.  Now there are very few things that will cause me to lose it like seeing my family hurt, but for a few years now I have quietly burned on the inside with a spirit of vengeance and revenge.  I have even been guilty of praying that God would just zap them and do so in the most painful way possible.  I’m not saying that this is right, but I am saying that it was part of the process that I’ve gone through. I’m just being real with you.  God was kind to me and understood my pain and has gently moved me to the place that I am today.  Mercifully He has kept me out of direct contact with the offenders.  Otherwise, given the right surroundings (or the wrong surroundings, depending on how you view it) I would probably be a felon right now.  I love my Lord and I love my family.  I think that God requires this of a real man.  And I in no way feel like I have dealt with this in weakness, but I truly feel like my own health, my witness, and my relationship with others has been pushed to the brink as a result of what I’ve been through.  It has caused me to become a very skeptical person when it comes to making friends and trusting church people.  It didn’t help matters that I let my guard down long enough to reach out to another church position and had to drag all the old memories back out again for no apparent reason.

BUT… I say all of that to say this.  Here is the end of my journey carrying this load.  Today I am done with it.  Done.  I write the letter below as a Declaration of Pardon to those who attempted to assassinate life as I knew it.  What men/women meant for harm, God has turned into good.  Will the offenders ever read it? I have no idea.  But it is my reality.

 
Dear X,

You are forgiven.  Simply that.  Forgiven.  This forgiveness does not require reconciliation.  See, repentance requires one person.  Forgiveness requires one person.  Reconciliation, on the other hand requires two people… but to be perfectly honest, I would rather not.

Paul says this:

Hebrews 12:14

14 Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord.

I am finally at peace, but that does not mean that I need to be close with you or even talk it out for that matter.  See, just because I have forgiven you, it doesn’t mean that I trust you.  Trust is lost quickly but is built slowly. Some people just simply cannot be trusted and when it comes to my family, I am not going to put them at the risk of being hurt by you again.  I must be exceedingly careful who I trust.

I am relinquishing my need to see vengeance dealt to you and in return, I am placing you in the hands of God.  Whether He chooses to bless you exceedingly or if He deals harshly with you is His choice.  Either way, it is not for me to decide.  In my heart and mind, you are pardoned.  I will never be able to forget what happened because it was so cataclysmic.  But I pardon you and set you free from my wrath. I’m not waiting for an apology.  I’m not giving you a list of requirements.  I am simply granting clemency in my spirit for the harm done.  I am not saying to my family that what you did was okay nor am I telling them that there was not hurt.  I am saying that God can take you from my mind and heart and I trust Him to heal our hurts.

I wish the best for you.  I really do.  You taught me so much about people and myself.  You have given me a heart for true Christianity in the face of a Jezebel spirit and a Pharisaic religious greed.  I learned the nature of the demonic side of religion as opposed to the true sweetness of a loving relationship with my God.   Many people have hopefully been blessed and will be blessed by my testimony of what I’ve been through.  I’ve learned to see mankind through the eyes of Jesus rather than through the distortions of stained glass.

I’ve truly wondered if I forgive you will there ever be real justice, then I realized that real justice only comes from Jesus.  The cross is where we all find justice.  He died for me and my sins, and yours too.  I truly hope that you will find freedom in Him like you have in me.  All the pain and tears that have happened are serious to God… so serious that He died for them.  I forgive you in the light of Jesus, knowing that justice is found at the cross or at the Judgement.  Either way, I know that He has it all under control.  I say all of this with a very humble spirit and in no way do I want to come across as haughty.  I truly seek peace for you as well as for my family.

Go in peace.

Scott

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~ by Scott Herrin on March 22, 2012.

10 Responses to “DEAR X, You’re forgiven (the hardest post I’ve ever written)”

  1. Very profound

  2. no other way to be. Been where you’ve been several times in my life and have had family wounded as well

  3. You have demonstrated a genuine and biblical forgiveness. So many people think forgiveness is a feeling when it is a decision. I commend you for your strength and willingness to be true to Christ. You will find freedom as you pursue Him.

  4. Sott, You have always been such an inspiration to me as a spiritual leader. I always thought of you as such a wonderful part of my spiritual upbringing. Reading this, I just learned so much from you. I always confused forgivness and trust. As you always do, you explained it in such a way that I completely understand. Thank you and I love you.

    • Shellie, it always amazes me that when I share a lesson God is teaching me, He uses it to teach others too. I always worry that I share too much. But here I simply learned that forgiveness is an issue of trusting on God… Not man. I’m glad we are learning together!

  5. Scott,
    I have had to do this myself, and it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I was so angry and hurt that my trust in a family member was obliterated, and even more hurt when my mom, finding out several years later, told me that I should forgive. You know my mom and we both know she meant that with a love for God and knowing that harboring pain and resentment and hate would only hurt me most. It took almost 15 years to do so, but I was finally able to let go and forgive, leave the justice to God, and find peace. Like you, I don’t have to be in the presence of that person very often, thankfully. It’s incredibly freeing to be rid of that hate and I thank God for it whenever I, inevitably, think about the past. Sending love, brother!
    Christy

    • I agree. For me it was an issue of pride. I wanted to see them pay. Forgive and forget is only a myth. But I can forgive and trust Him to handle the situation better than I. Peace and joy to you!

      Sent from my iPhone

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