To forgive is to let go. To be unforgiving is to hold on with all your might as if an offense were essential to your life’s path. You have been holding on to not letting go. Holding on is attachment. Who are you to not let go of what you grasp to be an infringement upon yourself?
Someone stepped on your toe. At some point, whoever it was, stopped stepping on your toe. He may even have apologized. In any case, he took his foot off yours and walked on. He probably never even remembers the incident you remember as an event, a huge event of sorrow for you, and you remember it again and again. Even when it was a small offense in passing, you branded it in your heart. Somewhere along the line, you announced this passage in time as unforgivable, and you are unable to let go of it, so you keep it alive and ever raw, living it and reliving it, rubbing your heart as on a grater.
Perhaps the one you cannot forgive looked at you askance, and you never forgot that look. He may not have been looking at you. He may have been thinking of something else altogether. You thought he was directing himself to you. In any case, you continue to think so.
Who is the perpetrator here? Who keeps this going and won’t let go? Why, it is you who is holding on to the hilt.
There are amazing stories of people who let go of past trespasses, serious trespasses, not the little offenses that too often plague My children.
Big or little, you plague yourself. When you let go, you are not doing a favor for another. When you let go, you kindly stop plaguing yourself.
Consciously, right now, let yourself off the hook. Forgive everyone for everything. Do it in one fell swoop. C’mon, let go of the vultures of the past that hang onto you for dear life. On behalf of your dear life, let go of them.
Someone else really isn’t the maker of you. You are the maker of you. If another’s glance or deed offends you based on actual events of great magnitude or your own over-blown sensitivity, do you really want to keep it for posterity? Perhaps someone promised to love you forever, and did not, and you put him in a dudgeon of your heart.
Beloveds, if you are holding on to the past, when are you going to let go of it? When will you set yourself free?
Take two steps forward. If one foot of yours holds onto the past, that is one foot too many. Keep your dreams. Surely, keep your beautiful dreams and let go of bad dreams about what others have done or not done that impact you.
Leap past the past, jump past it, leave the past behind. Say, “Farewell, Useless Past.”
You are aware that you have to let go of old sweaters you have stuffed in a trunk. You simply have to let go of everything from the past and choose today’s sunshine. Clouds pass. There is a good reason for this, so that you may bless life for others and open your life to possibilities.
It is not for you to sum up other people and staple them to the Fate of Your List of the Heart’s Unforgiven. It is your heart We are concerned with. Forgive yourself for your trespasses.
Get out of the hard-hearted mold. Hard-heartedness is not strength. It is weakness.
Do I hear you say you cannot forgive another for your perception of him? Then change your perception of him.
You do not have to condone in order to forgive. You are not giving up anything but an offense you have coddled in your heart. Give it up gladly.
Do you counter that you just can’t forgive, try as you may?
Then forgive yourself for being unforgiving. Just don’t try so hard. Just as you drop junk mail into a wastepaper basket without a backward glance, drop off what you have been carrying around that is really not yours to carry.
Drop off the past and cry out, “Hallelujah!”