We are called to forgive by going through three steps: (1) Name it. We
shouldn’t just ignore it or minimize it. By naming why we are hurt we can disarm
the wound’s secret control over us. (2) Accept it. Realize that you are hurt and
don’t throw the pain back or nurse it secretly on the side. (3) Absorb it. This
is the most painful part—what Tim Keller equates with a form of death. It’s
really awful to absorb the wrongs others have done to you, but on the other side
of that death is new life; resurrection that will empower you to love more like
Christ. ~ Rob Bell - Live from National Pastors' Conference by Skye Jethani
I had coffee with a friend last Saturday and we were talking about how unforgiveness traps us in a prison. The other person never feels a thing in many cases. When we forgive, even though we may not be ready to get up and walk out of the prison cell, the bars disappear. Whilst I believe that forgiveness is a one-off decision, the hardest part is that it is also a series of continual choices. And sometimes - without warning - like the pain from a phantom limb, the pain sears through me like a red hot poker. But the frequency of those moments subsides.
How do you understand forgiveness?