I Can’t Stay Mad at you

Response to the prompt: “Do you hold grudges or do you believe in forgive and forget?”

I don’t believe in holding grudges because of what happened to me when I was young:

The first experience happened when I was just 20 years old. I had just learned that my stepfather was not my real father and that my real father lived in Germany. At first, I was very angry at both my parents for not telling me the truth sooner. But that anger churned in my soul for weeks and I was not happy, I was tormented. Finally I went to a Christian meeting where the speaker spoke of forgiveness and holding grudges. Deep in my soul I knew she was telling the truth because of the torment I felt. I started to cry and I forgave my parents right then and there. I felt a weight drop off of me and I was happier.

The next time I experienced what happened when one hold’s grudges was when a deeper more buried in my subconsciousness surfaced. A near relative of mine had abused me sexually when I was 11-12 years old. I had buried that memory deep within and forgotten it. But with it I buried the anger and bitterness I felt. Years later, when I was attending Oral Roberts University, a friend of mine recounted a memory of her own similar to mine and we prayed about it. I then went to go to the aerobic center to do some walking and as I walked the memory of mine came slamming into my conscience along with the anger and hatred I felt. Nothing could have been more painful. I ran back to my friend and recounted my own tale and feelings. Although praying helped us both, we needed weeks of counseling to put it behind us.

So now, I cannot hold my anger and grudges any longer. I know personally what it will do to me if I do.  (Matthew 18:18-35)

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