A new coworker of mine reminds me of my ex-wife. Her personality, her mannerisms, her inflections. While this woman is actually pretty cool to work with and I have NOTHING against her at all, I can’t help but battle these reminders of anger and hurt that have sideswiped me.
I’ve been divorced for several year and have gone to God in prayer many times to give me the strength to forgive my ex-wife. Up until now, I’ve had no ill will toward her. I’ve prayed for her healing, for her well being, for her post-divorce (PD) life. But this new territory of having daily reminders of a broken relationship, and of annoyances that I was too chicken to ever say anything about, has me staggering a bit.
I guess if there’s any kind of moral to this story, it’s that forgiveness is an ongoing thing. My ex-wife doesn’t NEED my forgiveness, but I NEED to forgive her. As often as necessary. Beyond just saying once to myself, “I forgive this person for this or that offense,” I need to be in a continual MINDSET of forgiveness, one that is characterized by an attitude that acts as if the offense never happened. Yeah. That’s the real picture of forgiveness.
Another lesson learned here is that healing comes in spurts. While I’ve come a long, long way since my divorce, I am seeing that there are still nooks and crannies of my soul that need some work. There are apparently still some bruises that are a tad sensitive to the touch.
A Few Thoughts to Pass On:
**Don’t be overly surprised if you encounter something that reminds you of your ex years down the road.
**Don’t be too surprised if you find yourself occasionally hurt by a painful memory.
**Don’t be surprised by the need to continually forgive.
**Don’t mistake your need for continued healing for weakness. It takes a real man to probe the corners of his soul to see where the bruises are.
**Don’t withhold forgiveness, lest you become a bitter, scared old man, incapable of ever loving again.
**Don’t be afraid to forgive.
**Don’t be afraid to unpack these surprise feelings with a trusted friend or two.
**Don’t be afraid comment and let the rest of us know about your journey of forgiveness.