This is the only book I’ve ever pre-ordered.
I had seen press releases about the up and coming title and without knowing a whole lot about it, knew I’d give it a read because, well, Lysa Terkeurst is a powerhouse.
And then I caught a blurb somewhere, probably through my Proverbs 31 Ministries subscription, about a three day email series preceding the book release.
So, I signed up.
Those three emails…..POW-ER-FUL!
I couldn’t get the book on pre-order fast enough.
It also confirmed what was on my heart about “Forgiveness & Boundaries” as a topic of focus here on 3 Under 3 in 15 Months @SimplyWriteous (and associated social media) to kick off the new year.
The book arrived – my rushed anticipation leading to only a minor cardboard cut while recklessly tearing open the packaging – and I spent the month of November devouring these incredible words…my journal filling with lots of thoughts along the way.
Wanna know what I intend to do with all those thoughts filling my journal?
I intend to share them with you!
Through the month of January I open my heart, mind and journal to share my reflections on this confusing and sensitive topic.
And I’m here to encourage and cheer you on as you embrace the tricky business of forgiveness (and boundaries) as well.
So without further ado….
Chapter 1: Forgiveness, the Double Edged Word
Popular mis-conception, that I myself have embraced, about what forgiveness is or means has often stunted my own freedom and growth.
-Forgiveness lets the other person off the hook for their transgressions, perhaps even allowing them to believe they were never in the wrong to start.
-You can’t have truly have forgiven if you haven’t also forgotten.
-Relationships must be healed as part of the process for forgiveness.
-Once you’ve forgiven, the tidal wave of emotions also disappears.
But here’s the thing: there are people I just don’t want in my life anymore.
I’m tired of the manipulation, the judgment, the gossiping. I’m tired of being treated poorly, to my face and behind my back, repeatedly, and just allowing time to pass so the transgressions can be swept under the rug as though nothing happened. I’m tired of working so darn hard in attempt to make everyone else happy, at the expense of my own mental and physical health and well-being, when I already know it’s an impossible feat…and everybody loses.
Mentally. Physically. Emotionally.
Per popular mis-conception this means I’m “holding on to grudges” and not acting in a way that is Godly because I “haven’t forgiven”.
The twisted ideas about forgiveness per worldly view makes it hard to sort out the noise about forgiveness from what forgiveness actually is, looks like and requires.
It is a question I intend to reflect on through the study of this book – because I DO want to embrace TRUE forgiveness – even if the relationships don’t mend – for MY OWN health and happiness.
Because this is what my family deserves. It’s what I deserve, too!
My favorite take-aways from Chapter 1:
-Forgiveness doesn’t demand all relationships work out; it’s not always about restoring relationships. You can forgive and the relationship never restores. In fact, some relationships weren’t meant to be restored.
-We are called to be obedient to God and His commands. He calls us to forgive BUT Redemption and Reunion aren’t mutually exclusive. Redemption is between you and God. Reunion requires two parties who are agreeable and willing to do the work to come back together (it is NOT a one-way street where reunion is embraced at the expense of one person continually being mistreated by the other). Reunion is optional. Redemption is where our focus should lie.
-Freedom from unforgiveness doesn’t mean all the BIG emotions magically heal and immediately go away. What it does mean is that we don’t run the risk of these emotions settling into our hearts and souls in the form of bitterness, which is a common gateway for the enemy to enter our lives and launch attack.
Forgiveness takes: time, understanding, insight, divine intervention & openness.
It is both a journey AND a destination. One I am confident Lysa will help us to navigate as perfectly as possible throughout the study of this book.
Are you packed and ready to both journey – AND ARRIVE – with me?
I welcome having you along.
And you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.John 8:32 NIV
Love and Hugs from Colorado,
If you haven’t already, get your copy of this amazing read:
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Quotes, direct and paraphrased, are used throughout this article from “Forgiving What You Can’t Forget” as beautifully written and owned by Lysa Terkeurst