“…Love your enemy and pray for your persecutors, so that you may be sons of your heavenly Father; for He makes the sun to rise on the evil and the good and He pours rain upon the just and unjust.” – Matthew 5: 44-45

“I CAN forgive but not forget.” This is the common excuse we hear from people who can’t let go.

I am one of these people. No matter how hard I try to forgive and forget a wrong done to me, I just can’t block out the bad memory. I remember very clearly what had happened, especially if I see the one who had done me wrong. Like these classmates and former friends of mine whom I have chosen to forget after a major spat almost two years ago. Until now, I still pretend that they don’t exist though I see and meet them everyday in our classroom.

I often tell myself that I have forgiven them, but with a defiant stand of “things will never be the same again.” These former friends of mine have grown tired of reconciling with me because I simply can’t accept their apologies and explanations. I have deemed the damage beyond repair.

Because of this, I have grown bitter over time due to my pride. My inability to forget has caused me to be distrustful and judgmental of people. I chose to be withdrawn and alone for the fear that I will have another set of insincere friends.

But now I can see that I am paying the price for being overly paranoid. I can’t seem to enjoy being with classmates other than my friends. I can also sense that somehow, a number of them are reticent and hesitant in approaching me.

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Now I know that I haven’t really forgiven my former friends, despite all my self-assurance that I’m ready to let go of the past. Just because of my selfishness, pride and one bad experience, I have forgotten that like my former friends, I am no stranger to mistakes. I also need to be human, to forgive and forget, and finally move on.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we thank you for giving us the chance to learn greatly from our mistakes. Help us to appreciate this opportunity to forgive, forget, and thus live again. Help us bounce back gracefully from any wrong we did and that was done to us. This we ask through Christ, our Lord, Amen.

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