My husband said quietly, “If you’re still talking about it, you haven’t forgiven it.” Forgiveness deletes stories.
I realized these hurts that I carry around were like cheap trophies boasting of no great win. War wounds continually picked at couldn’t heal, wounds not of nobleness and courage but of weakness and loss. Not a fireside story of inspiration. Why did I keep telling the hurt stories? The injustice stories?
. . . because I wanted resolution, restoration, justice
But forgiveness is not about resolution. It is about letting go, and that means to stop talking about it – unless it is a redemption story, a ministry story, a where-God-took-me-after-forgiveness story to teach others about forgiveness.
God shows us how to forgive. He shows us forgiveness throws sins into unretrievable places.
He “ throw(s) them into the depths of the ocean!” (Micah 7:19)
“as far as the east is from the west, “ (Psalms 103:12)
“behind your back“ (Isaiah 38:17)
He WANTS to “remember(s) your sins NO MORE” (Isaiah 43:25). He does not retell how you have slighted Him. He sent His son to build that bridge of forgiveness to Him. He built it on the cross: “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29).
Today, I walked away from the offense, the hurt. Crossed the bridge of forgiveness into a place of blessing, green pastures, milk and honey, shade, streams of living water, peace. The hurt stories and the injustice tales couldn’t follow me across that bridge – and I couldn’t carry them across. If I wanted to get to that place on the other side, I had to drop, fling or just set those stories and tales down.
Across the bridge of forgiveness, God will heal me, strengthen me – and the stories I tell will change, transformed by my forgiveness, my setting down.
Are you still talking about it?
Do you need to hit the delete button of your story collection?