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Posts Tagged ‘Forgiveness and reconciliation’

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Forgiveness and reconciliation differ, insofar as reconciliation is a two way street. Forgiveness, by contrast, can be unilateral, and we are commanded to forgive whether the other person deserves it or not, whether our forgiveness changes the other person or not. Reconciliation requires reciprocity and aims at justice and the restoration of right relationship.
Not all hurts are alike, and forgiveness is often painfully difficult. For some kinds of wound, it can years of hard work and professional help. But notice something that both the saying from Evagrios and the one from recovery programs have in common. In both cases, the primary benefit of forgiveness accrues to the one who extends it. In the one case, it removes an obstacle to our relationship with God. In the other, it gets rid of something like a poison or cancer that is harming our own soul. I suspect, in fact, that both sayings point to the same underlying reality.
Forgiveness does not mean giving up on the quest for justice. It does mean forswearing revenge and giving up on the attempt to control the outcome. It means letting go of the other person and his or her power over us. It is ultimately for our benefit. Others may benefit, especially if we move past forgiveness to reconciliation. On the other side of forgiveness, we find the grace to let the past be the past, and rediscover our true freedom in God.
– Unknown

 

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