I feel like a phoney writing this blog about forgiveness, to be honest. It is something I am not very good at and am still learning about everyday (every hour…). However, the word forgiveness has been following me around this week. It started as a stranger sitting awkwardly next to me on a park bench whom I was trying to avoid. Then it started following me around quite hard to ignore. It finally tapped me on the shoulder, like “Hey! I’m here! And I need you to pay attention.” So here I am, trying to pay attention.
I learn a lot of lessons from my community and friends at The Dale – that lesson most recently being forgiveness. Last week there was a potential for two of our community members to be in messy conflict. I was anxious, waiting for the worst, but praying for a miracle. And it happened. Long story short – on Sunday at church after working through the details of what they needed, they shook hands and forgave each other. It was a literally, “I forgive you” said out loud on both sides. Shortly after, another community member offered a peace offering to a friend he had a disagreement with earlier in the week. Two amazing miracles in the span of a few minutes.
Yesterday I helped facilitate our bible study. We always eat together before hand at St Francis Table for a dollar. I sat with some Dale friends and we ended up talking about marriage and how it can be really hard. We also talked about forgiveness and I admitted that it can be really hard for me to learn, especially in marriage. Then we went into bible study and read the end of John, when Jesus sees his disciples for the first time after His resurrection. We talked about how the disciples ran back to Jesus, and that he greeted them with Peace, even Simon Peter who had betrayed Jesus days earlier.
I was taking all of these things and thinking them over and praying about them in my heart. I was amazed at how forgiveness kept showing up this week, over and over again. Then I realized that God was teaching me a lesson about my own self. Being a wife can be really hard and being in a marriage takes a lot of strength and courage. It also takes sacrifice. As all couples do, Ian and I go through periods where we argue what feels like more often then not in a week. This is really exhausting, and I find myself wanting to be right, rather than to say sorry and forgive. One night this week after we had worked out a disagreement, I remember we actually said out loud to each other, “I forgive you,” and it felt like a weight was gone. That is the power of forgiveness.
I am still learning about this. I am still trying really hard to say sorry, even when I want to say that I’m right. And I am learning what it means to feel peace about forgiveness. It is really powerful, and I am grateful that God uses my friends at The Dale to teach me powerful lessons. May you know the power and peace of forgiveness this week, whether that be with your self or with someone else.
It would mean so much to me if you were able to partner financially with The Dale to support my role within this ministry. There are a number of ways to do this, including CanadaHelps, PAR, or cheque. Please reach out to me if you would like more information on partnering with me in this way. Thanks for your support!