Forgive as you have been forgiven. Not because it is easy, but because it is at the core of who you are in Christ. Matthew 6:14-15
The Christian Embassy of Christ’s Ambassadors (CECA) a philanthropic organization in British Columbia, Canada, founded Global Forgiveness Day which is celebrated annually on July 7. Their goal is to attempt to curb the unending stream of conflicts that flows through all of our lives through forgiveness. And you can be a part of this global movement by forgiving someone in your life today.
This is definitely one of those easier-said-than-done things. But, the growing research on forgiveness suggests that people who forgive have lower blood pressures, live longer lives, are happier, have better functioning immune systems, higher self esteem and fewer stress related health issues. So in order to be well we need to learn to forgive.
What does it mean to forgive anyway? According to psychologist and author Sonja Lyubomirsky forgiveness is “a shift in thinking such that your desire to harm that person (who has wronged you) has decreased and your desire to do him good (or to benefit your relationship) has increased.” And this shift in thinking certainly does not happen overnight.
It is a process where you feel the entire range of emotions that begins when pain moves to kindness and compassion. It is a path that you choose to take where you acknowledge the wrongdoing, feel all the emotions that come up with it, and then decide to go past it after having learned from it.
Forgiveness doesn't make the wrong right; it doesn't say justice was carried out or that the crime was forgotten or pardoned and it doesn't mean you have to make up with the person who has wronged you either.
It is a step you take on your own personal journey to find peace and restore the joy that God meant for us to have.
Global Forgiveness Day is a perfect time to decide to surrender past hurts and open our hearts for the blessings that await us.