Yesterday, I met with a friend that I had not spoken to because of an argument. He had told me over a year ago that he was sorry, but I was not ready to hear it. I probably “accepted” his apology at the time. But my hope was that I would never see him again.
Life is weird. Because I chose not to let it go, I have been carrying around a smoldering rage in my chest. My faith went from bad to non-existent. I disengaged from my new church and made ever effort not to make new connections.
The saying biting off your nose to spite your face comes to mind.
I wish forgiveness was a switch that you pulled. Someone offends you, pull the switch and all is forgiven. But like it or not, there is an element of time. While turning the other cheek may be an instantaneous reflex, forgiveness is not. While I did not plot revenge over the last year, neither did I let it go. Time finally forced my stubborn spirit into action.
I said the words.
I forgive you.
I will probably mean those words more over time. But the mere act of saying them has put out the raging fire.
When the meeting was done, I had a huge sense of relief. I also felt completely drained.
But at the end of the day, I had lost an enemy and reclaimed a friend. Not bad for a days work.