One could argue that worst type of captivity is not the captivity that you can see, but rather the captivity that you can’t see. – EE Winkler
Have you ever stopped to consider, what is it that’s holding you captive? Is it yourself? It is another person? Is it a substance? Is it unforgiveness?
So often, we don’t realize that we’re bound up in unforgiveness. We just think that we are the way we are because that’s how we are. But over time, even small offenses will build up and have the capacity to do so much damage in our lives.
Forgiving is the key to your freedom.
I think that all of us can look inside and find at least one person that we need to forgive. Truth be told, it might be that you need to forgive yourself. We think that the things that people do to hurt us do not really matter and do not affect us, but actually they really do.
By not forgiving them, you’re actually allowing yourself to stay in a perpetual state of bondage. Eventually unforgiveness turns into bitterness and it will affect your life whether you want it to or not. You will actually not be able to love yourself and love others at your potential capacity if you choose to stay stuck in unforgiveness.
What does it mean to forgive someone?
To forgive means that you CHOOSE, not necessarily feel, to no longer hold the offense of someone else against them. I emphasize CHOOSE, because so often we think we have to wait until we feel like it before we forgive. But this principle is a faulty logic that we do not apply in other areas of our lives.
We CHOOSE to exercise even if we are tired because we understand the health benefits.
We CHOOSE to go to work, even if we don’t feel like it because we are committed.
We CHOOSE to be kind, even if we don’t feel happy because it is the right thing to do.
We CHOOSE to love others even when they are not loving to us because we are called to.
We make choices every single day and forgiveness just has to be one of those choices that we make. IF, and only if, we want to be free and remain free. Freedom always costs something and just because we are free today does not mean that we do not have to work to maintain our freedom for tomorrow.
What happens if the painful feelings come back after we forgive?
Sometimes, after we choose to forgive, the feelings of hurt, sadness and pain start to creep up again. When this happens, we have to remind ourselves that we have chosen to forgive and choose not to stay angry. This is so important because if we entertain these feelings then will find ourselves being bound up all over again. We must release that hurt and choose, even when we don’t feel like it.
So, who do you need to forgive today?
Won’t you make a choice to forgive them? The freedom that you crave is well within your reach if only you will just choose.
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