Friday, December 28, 2007

forgiveness and anger

Here's a question I wrestle with: can a sin be forgiven but really forgotten? I mean, we say, "forgive and forget," but is the forgetting part really a possibility? Can what has been forgiven afterward still cause emotions to flare causing injury to old wounds?

6 comments:

Rick said...

As far as I know, the Bible never says "forgive and forget". On a human level, sometimes that is just not possible. And sometimes, the consequences of sin last a lifetime and never really go away. I've heard it said that forgiveness is the willingness to put away your right to revenge. I don't know how biblical that is, but that has helped me move through some difficult times. I also believe that it's important to do acts of forgiveness, even if our heart isn't there yet.

luann said...

Forgiving really big stuff is a daily (or hourly) thing. Often it's two steps forward, one step back. As for forgetting, I don't think that really happens, unless you bump your head really hard. But after a while, you can (sometimes) remember what was done but without the sting of anger.

Vicki Small said...

Maybe the reason Jesus said we should forgive "70 times 7" times is that He knew we would not be able to forget the really deep hurts, and that we would need to do the acts of forgiveness every time the pain strikes, all over again.

I find it most difficult to forgive someone when no apology has been made, or it has seemed insincere, or the person apologizing has tried to minimize the hurt.

Forgiveness, I've heard many preachers say, does not mean we are supposed to trust, or to accept again in close fellowship, someone who has hurt us deeply. If that can ever happen again, according to a local Calvary Chapel pastor, reconciliation should take place over a period of time; he also says reconciliation may look very different from the former relationship.

Back to your basic question: I don't really believe forgetting is possible, even when forgiveness is achieved. Consider a couple who stay together after one has committed adultery: Can the injured spouse really be expected to forget?

Anonymous said...

forgiveness mean act like it never happen. When GOD forgave our sin he remember no more. We were created in the image of GOD, so I don't know remember no more mean to you, to me it means forgive and for get.

Vicki U.

Anonymous said...

So far as I have experienced, things are not forgotten, but they are (by God's grace) remembered differently. No longer remembered as an offense, but rather a remembrance of how My Father's hand prevailed in a dark time.... a remembrance of His goodness and His ability to bring good from evil.
~Jody

Anonymous said...

forgiveness is a process..a constant choice and process. If someone murder's your family or child, do you forget it ever happened? No. If the person you pleged your life to and love dearly chooses to cheat on you and throw your marriage away, do you forget..ok it never happened?? If you are sexually abused do you just forget your dad or whoever did it? No!! it's perminant imprints on your heart. But you are called to forgive..not to forget. My husband of 4 years decided with in 3 months of marriage to cheat on me. I withstood over 3 years of living hell fighting for my marriage and my family. Against everyone's counsel, I stayed. Everyday I have to forgive him cuz something will come along or he'll do something that takes me right back to that pain to that place...sometimes I don't forgive and I lash out because it hurts. Other times, I let go and choose in that second to forgive him and move on. The more I do it, the less I react. It still hurts but not as much.