A Heart Beat Away From Judgment: Are You Ready?
#11
(06-17-2014, 08:41 AM)Clare Brigid Wrote:
(06-17-2014, 08:25 AM)Tantum Ergo Sacramentum Wrote: There are times when I want to forgive and try to, but then when dealing with the person again, those feelings of hurt come back. Have I truly forgiven them? Even though deep within me, I want to and desire to forgive them?

Sin is in the will, not the feelings.  This is why St. Paul writes, "Be angry, but sin not."
Exactly!

Sir, I love your consise and accurate answers and comments.
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#12
(06-17-2014, 09:18 AM)Vox Clamantis Wrote:
(06-17-2014, 08:51 AM)Tantum Ergo Sacramentum Wrote:
(06-17-2014, 08:41 AM)StrictCatholicGirl Wrote:
Tantum Ergo Sacramentum Wrote:There are times when I want to forgive and try to, but then when dealing with the person again, those feelings of hurt come back.

You said, when dealing with the person again. Are you in a situation where you must deal with him again? Do you work with him? Is this a member of your family? I ask because some people think that in order to forgive someone, we have to "become friends" again. But sometimes it's better to leave certain relationships behind for the good of our souls and the safety of our physical and mental health. That doesn't mean we haven't forgiven them.

Quote:Have I truly forgiven them? Even though deep within me, I want to and desire to forgive them?

Forgiveness is an act of the will. You wouldn't be human if "feelings of hurt" didn't resurface from time to time. But with an act of the will we can pray for them and their salvation, and wish them the best in the temporal world.  That way bitterness doesn't set in.  Those feelings are hard to overcome too, but the "desire to forgive" is also praise-worthy. God knows what's in your heart.
I want to thank you both SCT and CB for your posts.

I like their posts, too. They're right on. And it brings to mind something else where people can let their emotions -- or lack thereof -- mess them up:  The Sacrament of Penance.  Sometimes folks do something and know it's wrong, and, so, are intellectually sorry for having done it and resolve to never do it again. BUT, they don't feel all guilt-ridden. They're not burning with shame, not wallowing in it, not kicking themselves, not letting it affect how they feel about themselves. They might not even be emotionally bothered enough to think about it a whole lot. But they may well feel guilty for not feeling "guilty enough."

-- and conversely, there are people who feel guilty over every little thing, sin or not. They're ate up with the scruples. "I started thinking about that baseball game when praying the Rosary! What kind of person AM I?" or "I think that guy is so gorgeous. Am I lusting? Will I burn in Hell?!"

Both types can chillax. Like SCG and Clare said, it's the will that matters. Our emotions can be affected by a thousand things -- from whether we've had breakfast yet to whether we're sick, whether our dog just died, whether we're just in a pissy mood -- whatever. Ideally, the emotions and the situations we find ourselves in match up so they at least "make sense," but if they don't, then so be it. People should never, ever beat themselves up for their mere feelings or desires. It's what we DO with them that counts :)

Great posts, folks!!  :tiphat: :tiphat:  If I could just add someone else's (can't remember who it was at the moment  :(( ) 2-cents worth: "the whole of the spiritual life is in what you DO with what you're dealt", or words to that effect.
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#13
What about resentment?
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#14

This is another great FE discussion.  Have you folks read The Four Last Things? Reflecting on the four last things is one of those traditions that seems to have gone by the wayside... There's an excellent short book on this topic by - FATHER MARTIN VON COCHEM, O.S.F.C. [link below]

"The Catholic Church has always reminded her spiritual children to reflect often, even daily, on "The Four Last Things": Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell. For there is nothing better conceived than this powerful meditation to bring forcefully before our minds the essential purpose of life, namely, to save our souls and avoid Hell. The saints have recommended it most highly, especially the great Doctor of the Church, St. Alphonsus Liguori (1689-1787). "

The Four Last Things
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#15
(06-17-2014, 08:25 AM)Tantum Ergo Sacramentum Wrote: There are times when I want to forgive and try to, but then when dealing with the person again, those feelings of hurt come back. Have I truly forgiven them? Even though deep within me, I want to and desire to forgive them?
Oftentimes the hardest thing to do in life is to forgive, and when resentment peeks its head it is often a sign that we are being tempted to hold on to a grudge and not forgive from the heart. After all, there is a difference between forgiving someone in word but not forgiving someone in the heart. Forgiving from the heart is a lesson in letting go of ourselves, our vanities, of our pride; thus it is a lack of humility when we do not forgive from the heart. One thing to remember is to remind ourselves of how we often ask God to forgive us as we forgive those who trespass against us. The reason we need to forgive is because we have been forgiven; God forgives us our sins, and desires that all Men repent of their sins. God wants us to love Him above all things because He knows it is what is good for us, since He is the Source of Goodness and Truth itself.

Jesus was humiliated, tortured, mocked, publicly paraded, dragged through the streets, violently executed in public in front of His Mother after his flesh was torn to shreds in the midst of Him asking His Father to forgive His executioners. Because we sin though our senses, Christ suffered through His senses to atone for our sins. I'm sure He was hurt when His friends and disciples all ran to the hills and denied Him. Yet He carried on without a grudge or resentment. Likewise we too must follow the way of the Master.

The more we die to ourselves and crucify our pride and vanity the more we shift the focus off ourselves and our hurt feelings begin to be replaced by a thirst to forgive the way Christ forgives. When asked by St. Faustina how it is that He can forgive all the sacrileges  against Him, Jesus said He has mercy because He knows what awaits unrepentant sinners who die in their sins. His love for us is so great He sacrificed Himself for us that we may be saved from our sins if we but turn to Him, He gives us the grace to overcome any spiritual obstacle.

Hell is a consequence, much like blindness is the consequence for plucking one's own eyes out. When we hold onto resentment and un-forgiveness in the heart, it springs all sorts of other sins against neighbor.
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#16
(06-17-2014, 12:10 PM)Gabriel Serafin Wrote:
(06-17-2014, 08:25 AM)Tantum Ergo Sacramentum Wrote: There are times when I want to forgive and try to, but then when dealing with the person again, those feelings of hurt come back. Have I truly forgiven them? Even though deep within me, I want to and desire to forgive them?
Oftentimes the hardest thing to do in life is to forgive, and when resentment peeks its head it is often a sign that we are being tempted to hold on to a grudge and not forgive from the heart. After all, there is a difference between forgiving someone in word but not forgiving someone in the heart. Forgiving from the heart is a lesson in letting go of ourselves, our vanities, of our pride; thus it is a lack of humility when we do not forgive from the heart. One thing to remember is to remind ourselves of how we often ask God to forgive us as we forgive those who trespass against us. The reason we need to forgive is because we have been forgiven; God forgives us our sins, and desires that all Men repent of their sins. God wants us to love Him above all things because He knows it is what is good for us, since He is the Source of Goodness and Truth itself.

Jesus was humiliated, tortured, mocked, publicly paraded, dragged through the streets, violently executed in public in front of His Mother after his flesh was torn to shreds in the midst of Him asking His Father to forgive His executioners. Because sin though our senses, Christ suffered through His senses to atone for our sins. I'm sure He was hurt when His friends and disciples all ran to the hills and denied Him. Yet He carried on without a grudge or resentment. Likewise we too must follow the way of the Master.

The more we die to ourselves and crucify our pride and vanity the more we shift the focus off ourselves and our hurt feelings begin to be replaced by a thirst to forgive the way Christ forgives. When asked by St. Faustina how it is that He can forgive all the sacrileges  against Him, Jesus said He has mercy because He knows what awaits unrepentant sinners who die in their sins. His love for us is so great He sacrificed Himself for us that we may be saved from our sins if we but turn to Him, He gives us the grace to overcome any spiritual obstacle.

Hell is a consequence, much like blindness is the consequence for plucking one's own eyes out. When we hold onto resentment and un-forgiveness in the heart, it springs all sorts of other sins against neighbor.
Hell is a consequence, much like blindness is the consequence for plucking one's own eyes out. When we hold onto resentment and un-forgiveness in the heart, it springs all sorts of other sins against neighbor.
  I will put this into practice more often than I have been.  Thank you all and may God bless you all for your acts of charity.
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#17
(06-17-2014, 10:47 AM)Tantum Ergo Sacramentum Wrote: What about resentment?

What about it?  When you become aware of resenting someone, bring it to confession.  It might help, too, to bring it to the person it concerns and ask for their forgiveness, having forgiven them, in turn,  for that which brought on the resentment.  See?  It's simple.  :) :) 
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#18
I'm one of those guys that, had i been born in another time and place and been a mafia don, would have killed people that screwed me over decades prior just because i don't forget. Forgiveness is hard for me and once you screw me over you're no longer someone I still deal with, ever. That being said there is a difference between forgiving and forgetting; we should forgive because Our Lord asks us and because grudges harm us but we don't have to like the person that harmed us or give them second chances. Forgive for God's sake and your own healing but sometimes it's ok to want nothing to do with that person.
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#19
Forgiveness is a tough one... I know for me, it is something I have to purposefully do every day.

I am a sexual assault survivor and I've talked to a lot of survivors who resent being told to forgive their attacker.  Many maintain it isn't possible.  I recall being told by a priest that I will never heal until I forgive him.  I think what a lot of non survivors don't realize is that when you have PTSD, the hurt just keeps resurfacing.  THe event might have ended in chronology, but random things in your environment can set off a chain reaction of memories inside your head and you can go from business as usual to back to the scene of the crime, unaware that  any time has passed.  Flashbacks can be so vivid, you think it's happening all over again.  

I am still recalling events from the assault that must have been buried inside my head.  I didn't think it was possible for someone to hate me so much.  clearly his entire goal was my annihilation, not just physical but psychological and spiritual annihilation.  It's difficult to be a recipient of this kind of hatred without being filled with hatred.

at this time, he has never asked for my forgiveness.  I think that if he were to do this, I would hope I would say "I forgive you."  As it stands, I have no idea what he is plotting to do to me.  I hope that he at the very least isn't intending to go after me again, or even worse, my family.

I told a priest once about this and his response was, "you have to forgive him."  but i still wonder what that is supposed to look like for me.  I still wish he had a longer sentence, not just for me but for my family who he said he would murder, and for anyone else who might find themselves in a similar predicament.  I can't imagine that I was his only victim.  I want to be merciful but I also want justice.  Sometimes being told to forgive sometimes makes me feel like I'm supposed to just gloss over the damage that he did, or act like it never happened and say "We're cool."

for me, forgiveness is something I try to do on a continuous basis because the trauma emerges and re emerges continuously.  I can't say there will ever be a time when it will be a done deal.
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#20
(06-17-2014, 01:59 PM)Chestertonian Wrote: Forgiveness is a tough one... I know for me, it is something I have to purposefully do every day.

I am a sexual assault survivor and I've talked to a lot of survivors who resent being told to forgive their attacker.  Many maintain it isn't possible.  I recall being told by a priest that I will never heal until I forgive him.  I think what a lot of non survivors don't realize is that when you have PTSD, the hurt just keeps resurfacing.  THe event might have ended in chronology, but random things in your environment can set off a chain reaction of memories inside your head and you can go from business as usual to back to the scene of the crime, unaware that  any time has passed.  Flashbacks can be so vivid, you think it's happening all over again.  

I am still recalling events from the assault that must have been buried inside my head.  I didn't think it was possible for someone to hate me so much.  clearly his entire goal was my annihilation, not just physical but psychological and spiritual annihilation.  It's difficult to be a recipient of this kind of hatred without being filled with hatred.

at this time, he has never asked for my forgiveness.  I think that if he were to do this, I would hope I would say "I forgive you."  As it stands, I have no idea what he is plotting to do to me.  I hope that he at the very least isn't intending to go after me again, or even worse, my family.

I told a priest once about this and his response was, "you have to forgive him."  but i still wonder what that is supposed to look like for me.  I still wish he had a longer sentence, not just for me but for my family who he said he would murder, and for anyone else who might find themselves in a similar predicament.  I can't imagine that I was his only victim.  I want to be merciful but I also want justice.  Sometimes being told to forgive sometimes makes me feel like I'm supposed to just gloss over the damage that he did, or act like it never happened and say "We're cool."

for me, forgiveness is something I try to do on a continuous basis because the trauma emerges and re emerges continuously.  I can't say there will ever be a time when it will be a done deal.

Wow!  Thanks for your openness and candor.  I know discussing this stuff with others, even anonymously on the internet, can be difficult.  May God grant you the strength and will to forgive your assailant!  Almost all of us have been assaulted in one way or another--we are all wounded.  Sometimes I find myself having to forgive someone over and over and over again.  Eventually the hurt eases.  This will, of course, be different for each person.

It's important to remember that forgiving doesn't undo the act requiring forgiveness.  It's not glossing over it or suppressing it.  It still happened and you cannot un-happen it.  And remember, too, that because forgiveness is an act of the will, not of the emotions, it is a *choice* that you can make.  Making it facilitates healing, both for you and the "offender".  Not making it perpetuates the wound.  It's simple, but definitely not always easy.

Christ told us "All things therefore whatsoever you would that men should do to you, do you also to them. For this is the law and the prophets."  Who amongst us is NOT guilty of wounding another?  Who amongst us is NOT in need of forgiveness?
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