Forgiving is something very simple in theory but difficult in practice. I understand that we're all finding our paths to the God within in our own unique, often stumbling ways. I know that we are all perfect in the process of remembering who we are. Much of the time, I can even consciously acknowledge the spirit of God within the people who I encounter.
I have a limitless ability to forgive, but that doesn't mean I always do it. Fear gets me stuck in needing to blame or to hold someone in a less than Godlike view. I need them to be a certain way, because I fear that if they aren't, somehow I will lose, something will be taken from me or I will be hurt, or somehow less. I know in my heart this is not true, but in that reactive moment it feels true. It usually has nothing really to do with the situation at hand, but more with reminding me of something from my past that I haven't yet come to terms with. Those memories can have alot of emotional charge.
Forgiving may not be easy much of the time, but it's an important part of our spiritual nature. When we condemn others in our thinking, even over little things, we perpetuate negativity in our awareness, and it can affect our outlook and physical health. It also robs us of our joy. Blaming takes alot of life force that I'd like to use for other, more delightful things.
Edwene Gaines talks wonderfully about forgiveness in her book "The Four Spiritual Laws of Prosperity." In the chapter, The Mysterious Power of Forgiveness, she states that "harboring a grudge completely blocks our ability to have peace of mind. . . An unwillingness to forgive is like stabbing ourselves with a knife and expecting the person who did us wrong to feel the pain. Forgiveness is not something we do for the sake of another person. Forgiveness is something we do for ourselves." Before I read her book, I hadn't considered the connection between prosperity and forgiveness.
I've enjoyed practicing one of Edwene's tools about forgiving, which is to try to spend an entire day without holding on to a single negative thought about anyone. It's harder than it sounds, and certainly makes it clear how often the mind rushes to judgement. I noticed in practicing this tool what a great space it is, choosing to instantly release each negative thought as it comes up and not dwell on it. In doing so, I create a world of my own making.
I learned another simple forgiveness tool from Roland at Unity. A group was discussing forgiveness, and he said "I just see them in the light." Wow. That means that in a twinkling we can see the truth of someone as the light of God, even if they have just done something that ticks us off. And the great thing is, it works!
I really love how the light of truth graces our humanness in so many simple, small ways.
May this tool be a blessing. . .