Aug 05, 2019

Forgiving Even When It Hurts

But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you — Luke 6:27

The foundation of my faith and how I strive to live my life is with love. I believe that love and forgiveness go hand in hand. Forgiveness is showing love for yourself, your enemies, and your God. Growing up as a pastor’s kid, I was taught from a very young age that if someone apologizes, you must forgive.

It wasn’t until my early teen years that a foreign concept of forgiveness stared me in the face. “Forgive in the absence of an apology.” My dad was pushed out from a church wrongfully with deceit and lies. I watched my dad’s heartbreak for months. I watched him struggle with anger, hurt, and fear that one person’s lies would strip his ability to provide for his family. After what felt like months of watching my dad struggle, we were sitting together in the living room. It was just the two of us home that day. I was sitting on the floor watching TV and he was sitting in the chair next to me reading. I asked him what he was reading. It was a book on forgiveness. He went on to tell me that he’d been struggling with holding a grudge against those who had wronged him. What he realized he had to do to move past the pain was to forgive those that may never ask for forgiveness. I remember it so clearly—he said, “I have to work through the process of forgiving them, even if they never apologize for what they have done. And if they do apologize one day years from now, there will be nothing to forgive, because I’ve already done it.”

This lesson has stuck with me through the years, and it was the first instance of many that I’ve watched my parents forgive people that never apologized for the hurt they had caused. They gave me countless gracious examples of love and forgiveness despite the pain. It’s an important reminder to us all that at the end of the day grudges only poison the person who is holding them. Forgiveness does not have to be asked for, for it to be given. Think about people who have wronged you, judged you, or hurt your family in any way. Unfortunately, as pastor’s kids we see the good, bad, and the ugly of the church and the members of it. Now I want you to dig deep and see if your holding any grudges against those people and start the process of forgiving them. They may never ask for it, but release yourself from that pain and grant yourself permission to move forward in love.

By <a href="" target="_self">Megan Rockefeller</a>

By Megan Rockefeller

Megan grew up as a pastor’s kid. She is a registered nurse and currently works in a cardiac cath lab. Megan is married to her high school sweetheart, Nick and they have a 2-year-old golden retriever named Nala. Megan shared that being a PK presented certain challenges for her during childhood leading into adulthood. However, these challenges have ultimately strengthened her relationship with God and have shaped her as a person.