forgiveness is not minimizing the seriousness of the offense. it’s not saying, “it’s not a big deal.” or “it’s ok. it didn’t really hurt me.” or if somebody tries to ask forgiveness, you say, “don’t worry about it. it’s no big deal. it didn’t hurt.” that is not forgiveness.
you need to understand the difference between being wounded and being wronged. those are two very different things. being wounded is something that is accidental, somebody hurts you accidentally. when you are wronged, they intentionally mean to hurt you. they are very different. when you are wounded, that does not require forgiveness. you’re hurt unintentionally all the time. you just need patience and acceptance at that. but when you’re wronged, when other people wrong you, that requires forgiveness. big difference.
sometimes we use forgiveness for all kinds of stuff that forgiveness doesn’t have anything to do with. let’s say you don’t like the way i normally dress. maybe that offends your fashion consciousness. i don’t need your forgiveness. i just need your acceptance. i may wound you. i may offend you. but i haven’t really harmed you intentionally. forgiveness is reserved for the serious stuff, when you’re intentionally hurt. when you minimize a wrong, either your own or somebody else’s, you are cheapening forgiveness.
so forgiveness is not conditional – it is unconditional. and it is not minimizing the seriousness of an offense saying it’s no big deal.
just a thought from the front porch…