An "Aha!" Moment in Forgiveness
I've had them before, and I will probably have more, but today I had to share. I don't know about anyone else, but I've been hearing the phrases "Being in the moment" and "being present" A LOT lately. I get the concept and I see the importance. I've been making a sincere effort to be present and appreciate the current moments in my life. There was a time when I lived very much in the future. No matter where I was, who I was with, or what I was doing, I was always daydreaming and wishing to be someplace else. As a result I missed out on the beauty of some great moments. I'm reminded of it every time my sister brings up a memory and I honestly have no idea what she's talking about... that's bad isn't it??
After that I had a major heart break and faced quite a bit of rejection so I went to the other extreme and retreated into the past. Replaying scenes of things that had happened, things I could have or should have said or done. Again, I lost a lot of time dwelling on the past and reliving things and emotions over and over. (Stay with me because I am going somewhere with this, I promise...)
One of the things that dwelling in the past does is it nurtures unforgiveness. When you constantly rehearse the past it keeps the feelings fresh and makes it all but impossible to forgive others or yourself or to truly move on - believe me I know!
So today I was watching a YouTube video about a completely unrelated subject and the woman mentioned the Oprah Winfrey quote above. Suddenly a light shone down on me from heaven and I heard a choir of angels singing... okay so maybe it didn't happen exactly like that, but I did have an "aha!" moment. In that instant I understood that forgiveness, or the lack thereof, is rooted in the idea many of us hold somewhere in the back of our minds that the past can be different somehow.
The reality is that none of us can go back in time and change anything we've experienced - good or bad. People have done wrong to us and we have done wrong to others. The only way to move on is to forgive and let go. It's not about excusing the person, but about freeing ourselves, and it starts with giving up the false hope that the past can be changed. I don't know if this is a revelation for anyone else today, but it sure was to me because it forced me to face the false hope I've carried for too long with regard to the past.
As this new understanding washed over me I felt a weight I didn't even know I was carrying lifting from my shoulders. It's a welcome feeling, and what's better, it's available to anyone! That's some shouting good news if you ask me!! It's one thing to tell folk to "just let go of the past." It's quite another to identify what's keeping them there and show them the way out. If you know what I know, you better escape while the gettin's good! Have a wonderful weekend, Beloved.