Set It Free.

Forgiveness

I thought I knew what forgiveness was. It’s when someone says they’re sorry and you accept their apology, letting go of the offense they made towards you. Isn’t it?

Well, yes. But forgiving someone and letting go of what they did to you doesn’t always take away the pain and the hurt that they caused you, no matter how unintentional it might have been. And usually, people don’t intend to hurt us, but they do and it’s in those time when it hurts the most.

Today during church, the pastor said that he felt someone needed prayer for forgiveness. Instantly, my mind went to one person. It was the same person that just this morning I had written about in my journal…

“So many times I just want to text and tell him how much I miss him and how much I hate him for everything he did and to thank him for all the lessons I learned and tell him I’m happy for him and ask him what wasn’t good enough about me and just cry so that he can see and feel and deal with everything he just dropped when he stopped giving a damn about me. But I never will. I will never again let him know that he had such a strong impact on who I am today. Because he won’t care enough and I’ll care too much. And that’s not worth it anymore.”

I didn’t go up for prayer.

I continued sitting with my legs crossed in the very back row of the church like I normally do. I figured he wasn’t talking to someone else. I had forgiven A quite some time ago for all the things that he had done to me. It wasn’t until I was in Europe that I realized I was truly over it all. I let it go. That meant I forgave him, right? I said I forgave him. Then that day that I was back home and I broke down in tears because I didn’t feel like enough, the day that God met me right there on the driveway as I cried out to Him. Surely I had let all of A’s offenses go for good that day. Hadn’t I?

When he walked away, I was devastated. After everything we had been through. Even after it all, I had stood beside him, and then he left. Just like that, with no explanation. No phone call, no apology, nothing. I let him go, knowing that I needed to, but that didn’t make it any easier.

A part of me was still hanging on. Why? I don’t know, and I may never know.

But I do know that when the pastor continued waiting as one then two and three then four others walked up for prayer, that he was waiting for me. I kept sitting, shifting ever-so-slightly in my seat from the discomfort of the heaviness I was feeling in my chest. With each second, it burned even more.

Before I knew it, I was moving towards the front. I heard a whisper, “there she is” from someone in the pews as I walked. I stood at the front of the church fighting tears as I twisted my rings around my finger, as I often do when I’m thinking over something I’m not sure of.

“What if it wasn’t me he was talking about?”

Usually when someone else goes up for a prayer call, I sigh a breath of relief that it wasn’t me who the Lord was calling out. But not this time. This time, I knew the moment pastor spoke that it was me he was talking to.

He confirmed that when he anointed my head with oil and breathed the words “thank you for your obedience” onto my forehead.

He clasped both his hands on the back of my neck and I sobbed. His words aren’t something I’ll soon forget, nor will that prayer of forgiveness I repeated. In that moment, I was setting it free. I was once and for all letting go of the hurt and the anger and the resentment that I had towards this person who had damaged me so badly.

For the first time, I was finally forgiving him and meaning it.

This may get easier someday, but not today.

I’ve nearly accepted the fact that Matt is gone. It’s been so hard to wrap my head around it and all I’ve done is cry the last few days, but I’m beginning to accept that I’m just going to have to wait until I get to Heaven to hear his laugh again. It doesn’t mean I’m done crying, and it doesn’t mean that I’m not going to think about him everyday, but it means that I’ve nearly accepted it. I have some of the best memories with Matt and nothing can take those away from me.

I’m starting my workouts back up after my weekend off. I’m not looking forward to it, but know I’ll feel amazing afterwards. I’ve just had no energy the last few days! Honestly, I’m not sure how I made it through this weekend but having so much going on kept me busy and my mind off things. Friday I worked and then went to the Festival of the Little Hills with my mom and Chantal. We ate amazing greek food and walked around for a bit. Then Saturday I worked all day, grabbed dinner and a nap, then went back down to the festival with Melissa. I found a few Christmas gifts and then we came back to my apartment and watched The Hunger Games and talked. I’m not a HUGE movie fan, and usually catch the movies about 3 years after they come out, but she talked me into watching it, and I didn’t hate it. We were up pretty late, but I still made sure to get up for church on Sunday. I’ve been going to Church on the Rock in St. Peters for about three weeks now and I REALLY like it. Pastor Blunt has been speaking on Vision and Victory, and it’s really changing the way I look at things. I’m so lucky I stumbled upon this church, it’s exactly what I need at this time in my life. After church, I laid around for an hour before heading to my aunt’s house for lunch. She made turkey burgers, corn on the cob and cucumber/tomato salad. It was delicious. Plus, it was gorgeous outside. It was great to spend the day relaxing with two of my aunts and my cousin, it had been awhile since I’d seen them. After that, I stopped at the wax center to take care of some, uh, business, came home and attempted to make protein pancakes for dinner (they weren’t that good, I’m going to have to find a different recipe…), then cleaned my apartment before showering and watching 4 (yeah, ridiculous) episodes of Pretty Little Liars (which I really liked).

So right now, I’m letting my breakfast digest a bit and then I’m hitting the gym for a run and some weight training. I’m going to meet mom at the mall later, talk to Jenny about transferring back to West County (I hate working at the VS in Mid Rivers), and see some friends. I think it’s going to be a good day off, then it’s gung-ho, here we go as my internship starts for the week, work all weekend and then school on Monday. Things are about to get even crazier!