The Irony of Forgiveness
Recently I had a conversation with my mother about what it would take for my brother and I to reconcile our relationship. I responded, “An act of God!” My brothers and my relationship went south about three years ago and we haven’t spoken to each other since that day. Now this became a topic of discussion with my mother because during the holiday’s it becomes a bit of a controversy as to who she will spend time with. If he comes to her home during the weekend, I will stay away until he leaves and vice versa. You would think that after three years whatever it was that we fell out about would be minuscule since so much time has passed. To be honest, it isn’t so much about the context of our falling out than it is about the specific words spoken during our last disagreement.
Over the course of these three years I did decide to overlook the words because as siblings this wasn’t the first time we’d had an argument, and honestly wouldn’t be the last. I invited my brother to my home and he declined to come. I even asked my brother to give me away at my wedding over a year ago, to which he scoffed at the suggestion and while he didn’t say no, he definitely didn’t say yes, nor did he ever show up to the event.
To my mother’s defense, her thought is that we should be able to “get over” whatever ill feelings we have towards one another, and while yes, we should this would mean that the two of us would have to yet again forgive each other. The irony in forgiving is that it really frees me from the previous feelings of hurt and anger that resulted from our last conversation. Releasing me from the negative feelings I carried around at the mere mention of my brothers name. I realize that without forgiving I’d be carrying around this weight on my shoulder and therefore blocking me from receiving anything positive due to the negative wall I put u[. But this however is a process and not a singular event. This nevertheless comes with a question. Does choosing to forgive automatically mean restoration follows?