Forgive Anyway

22 Nov

“It is easier to forgive an enemy than to forgive a friend.”  ~ William Blake

In many ways, it is very easy to forgive an enemy.  After all, the “job” of an enemy is to insult you, hurt you, or put you down in some way shape or form.  That’s what enemies do.  But, friends?  Why, friends build one another up.  They support one another.  They are there for one another when everyone else walks away.  Friends don’t hurt.  Friend’s love.

That is what we think the job description of a friend is all about.  However, we all know that friends, from time to time, hurt one another.  And when a friend hurts us, they often do so at a qualitatively worse level than an enemy.  Because, an enemy doesn’t know everything about us.  An enemy does not know what we fear the most or what frightens us the most.  A friend does.

When a friend hurts us, we often feel very betrayed.  We shout that we would never do anything like what was done to us.  We often sever our relationship with the friend who has hurt us.  We do not want to give them a chance.  Some of that decision comes from our extreme hurt and some of it comes from fear.  Since that person does know us so well, we are afraid that they will use something else deeply personal against us.

Sometimes that person who knows us so well was just having a bad day.  Sometimes the hurt that they inflicted was not really personal.  It may have been a reaction, a product of the situation or the moment.  To not forgive and not give the person another chance is to rob us of the opportunity of that person’s friendship and of support that they may have to provide.

Fear and hurt isolate.  Forgiveness heals and makes the bond grow deeper.

FAITH ACTION:  Are you holding a grudge against a friend who may have hurt you?  Consider forgiving that person today.