I realized a couple of years ago that most people still don’t understand what it means to forgive and to forget, and I believe that I really understood what it meant. So stay with me for a moment.
First, let me talk about the “forget” part because that is the subject of the general misconception of this phrase. Some think that the forgetting part mean to literally forget, but let’s think about it… can you actually forget? The answer simply is No! (with a capital letter N).
So what then does it mean to forget?! I’ve come to realize that it means to rid the experience of any negative emotions or feelings. Once the experience or person no longer has anything negative attached to it, this is when you “forget”. When you forget, you can remember the offence and laugh about it or joke about it, like it means nothing, because it literally means nothing. Think with me for a moment; you can count at least ONE experience from your past that once used to cause you hurt every time you remembered it, but when you remember it today, you do with a smile or you just laugh about it. That’s what it means to forget.
Now, forgiveness is easy to understand, yet hard for some. However, after many many discussions with friends about forgiveness, I have come to realize that unforgiveness is really not a matter of can or can’t, it is a matter of willingness. Most people I know will CHOOSE not to forgive, just because. I mean, for some other, they try but find it hard, but most others are just too stubborn and too proud to even consider it.
But thing is that forgiveness, if for YOU and not for the other person. When you forgive someone, it means you no longer hold anything against them for whatever they must have done to offend you. It means you no longer blame them, or hold them accountable or responsible for the office. It means you will no longer “punish” them for their wrong doing.
Putting it all together, to forgive and forget means to no longer hold anything against someone that has offended you and to no longer attache negative emotions to the experience in a way that in the future, you can remember the offence and it will not make you feed bad.
What do you think? Will you forgive, and forget?