Read Ephesians 4:32 – 5:1
Regen – Step # 8 – Forgive: We forgive those who have harmed us and become willing to make amends to those we have harmed.
I was 13 years old and in 8th grade when I first walked into therapy. You see, I kept trying to feel anything but sadness and unworthiness and I didn’t know how to get out of it, so I chose to hurt myself on the outside, thinking that would kill whatever was happening on the inside.
It didn’t work, never does.
I sat on that couch for a few months going over why I felt what I felt until my therapist taught me to think of the root to all my thoughts and emotions. After many weeks of working through my short eleven years, we found it.
Just 4 years prior, I was on the phone with someone, having a conversation that would set the course of all my decisions and choices for years to come. I was asked, like most 9-year olds, what I wanted to be when I grew up and I purely stated “a singer”.
I was met with a simple reply of, “Well, you’ll want to look more like your sister if you want to do that.”
Later in life, after having a conversation with them about this phone call, I realized that they had no idea what their words did to me for so long. They never understood the pain and torment I put myself through, comparing myself to my sister.
I was met by the Lord at 21 years old, attempting to take my own life because I never allowed myself to forgive this person for the words they said to me. I was met by the Lord to learn what forgiveness meant after studying His Word. I was met by the Lord, in the love and fellowship I was called to have with this person because they are, above all, a fellow Christ follower.
Forgiveness is not an easy step.
Especially when someone or something someone does hurts deeply. However, forgiveness is a gift that we received from Christ. Forgiveness was a gift that I received from Christ and I was called to live out to those who harmed me.
It’s not easy and it takes a lot of work, practice, prayer, and surrender to get to that place, but I’m thankful that forgiveness is a part of my recovery!
I was able to not only forgive this person in my 20’s for what was said, but I was able to forgive them as that 9-year-old girl who dreamed only of using her voice to make people smile and feel joy.
There is a lot more to this step in our recovery than simply forgiving, but it is a step, nonetheless, which allows us to give up the control and surrender all that we are and all that we were and all that we have for the Lord to use us and our story.
I pray that, as you re-read Ephesians 4, the Lord prompts you to begin the steps to forgive those who have wronged you and think of those who you have wronged to prepare that process of mending.
ReGeneration is a ministry for people battling the storms of life. From emotional struggles to substance abuse, ReGen is a ministry for those who want to experience healing, recovery, community and accountability in the midst of their storms. Currently, ReGen meets on Tuesday nights (7p) at Grace Church in Wooster. We would LOVE to host you! Text “regen” to 3302649459 if you want more information or want to attend!