Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by truestory, Dec 30, 1999.

  1. truestory Registered Senior Member


    I wish I could say that after a long and fruitful life, traveling the world, I had learned to forgive all my enemies. I wish I could say that merciful and charitable thoughts just naturally flowed from me on to others. But they don't. If there is one thing I've learned since I've passed my eightieth birthday, it's that I can't store up good feelings and behavior--but only draw them fresh from God each day.

    Maybe I'm glad it's that way, for every time I go to Him, he teaches me something else. I recall the time-- and I was almost seventy--when some Christian friends whom I loved and trusted did something which hurt me. You would have thought that, having been able to forgive the guards in Ravensbruk, forgiving Christian friends would be child's play. It wasn't. For weeks I seethed inside. But at last I asked God again to work His miracle in me. And again it happened: first the cold-blooded decision, then the flood of joy and peace. I had forgiven my friends; I was restored to my Father.

    Then, why was I suddenly awake in the middle of the night, rehashing the whole affair again? My friends! I thought. People I loved. If it had been strangers, I wouldn't have minded so.

    I sat up and switched on the light. "Father, I thought it was all forgiven. Please help me do it." but the next night I woke up again. They'd talked so sweetly too! Never a hint of what they were planning. "Father!" I cried in alarm. "Help me!"

    Then it was that another secret of forgiveness became evident. It is not enough to simply say, "I forgive you." I must also begin to live it out. And in my case, that meant acting as though their sins, like mine, were buried in the depth of the deepest sea....

    And so I discovered another of God's principles: We can trust God not only for our emotions but also for our thoughts. As I asked Him to renew my mind He also took away my thoughts.

    He still had more to teach me, however, even from this single espisode. Many years later, after I had passed my eightieth birthday, an American friend came to visit me in Holland. As we sat in my little apartment in Baarn he asked me about those people from long ago who had taken advantage of me.

    "It is nothing," I said a little smugly. "It is all forgiven."

    "By you, yes," he said. "But what about them? Have they accepted your forgiveness?"

    "They say there is nothing to forgive! They deny it every happened. No matter what they say, though, I can prove they were wrong." I went eagerly to my desk. "See, I have it in black and white! I saved all their letters and I can show you where...."

    "Corrie!" My friend slipped his arm through mine and gently closed the drawer. "Aren't you the one whose sins are at the bottom of the sea? Yet are the sins of your friends etched in black and white?"

    For an astonishing moment I could not find my voice. "Lord Jesus," I whispered at last, "who takes all my sins away, forgive me for preserving all these years the evidence against others! Give me grace to burn all the blacks and whites as a sweet-smelling sacrifice to your glory."

    I did not go to sleep that night until I had gone through my desk and pulled out those letters--curling now with age--and fed them all into my little coal-burning grate. As the flames leaped and glowed, so did my heart. "Forgive us our trespasses," Jesus thought us to pray, "as we forgive those who trespass against us." In the ashes of those letters I was seeing yet another facet of His mercy....

    Forgiveness is the key which unlocks the door of resentment and the handcuffs of hatred. It breaks the chains of bitterness and the shackles of selfishness. The forgiveness of Jesus not only takes away our sins, bit makes them as if they had never been.


    From "Tramp For The Lord" by Corrie Ten Boom with Jamie Buckingham (Christian Literature Crusade and Fleming H. Revell Company: Fort Washington, Old Tappen, 1974) pp.

    Yesterday's history. Tomorrow's a mystery. Today is a "gift." That's why we call it "the present."
    What will you do with your gift of today?
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  3. truestory Registered Senior Member


    When an encounter triggers a warm, comfortable feeling,
    this other (your mirror) is reflecting something you like
    about yourself. The appropriate and very important
    expression is gratitude.

    Every positive encounter reflects the beauty within you
    waiting to be expressed, and gratitude is the releasing
    mechanism. Gratitude is essential to reinforce your
    awareness of your reality as love.

    The flip side of that coin should start to become
    painfully apparent. When an encounter triggers fear in some
    form (anger, guilt, frustration, disappointment, annoyance,etc.)
    this other (your mirror) is reflecting something you
    don't like about yourself. Now the appropriate and very
    important expression is forgiveness.

    Forgiveness does not mean to forget that something happened,
    but to allow your voice within to guide you to a different way of
    seeing what happened to free you of your grievence.


    Your Owner's Manual, A Course In Miracles, Your Source for Inner Peace

    Yesterday's history. Tomorrow's a mystery. Today is a "gift." That's why we call it "the present."
    What will you do with your gift of today?
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  5. truestory Registered Senior Member

    When you forgive, you experience life as wondrous and joyful.
    It is this conditioned ego, our false identity, that blocks us from experiencing life as wondrous, joyful, and magical. Our conditioned ego keeps us locked in fears and in limiting ways of looking at ourselves and others. It is the conditioned ego that says "I don't deserve love," or" I can't do what I want." It is the conditioned ego that says "I'm not good enough," or "I'm a victim of circumstance." In short, it is the conditioned ego that causes us to limit our views of who we are, of what we can accomplish, and of how fulfilling our relationships can be. The worst part of it is, we are often not even aware that the conditioned ego is running our lives and that it is eclipsing our awareness of our magnificent true selves! When we react automatically to events in our lives or when we have knee-jerk responses to certain people, or when we dream about happiness and fulfillment but hear a voice in our heads that tells us our dreams will never come true, when all these negative and limiting responses spill out in these repetitive ways, our conditioned ego is in the driver's seat, running our lives. Therefore, if we are not presently fulfilling our goals, not experiencing the joy of love, not enthusiastic about each new day, we should thereby know that our conditioned ego is controlling and adversely affecting the quality of our lives!


    Forgive ourselves and others, to live fully and joyfully and love freely.
    Needless to say, if we are allowing ourselves to be limited in any way whatsoever, we must take positive and decisive action. The action we need to take is expressed as: "Forgive, Live, Love." Specifically, we need to forgive ourselves and others, to live fully and joyfully, and to love freely and without qualifications.

    This is because by forgiving, living, and loving, you can remove the blockages to your awareness of your magnificent, Divine nature and thereby attain the kind of good, right, and loving life that in your heart you've always desired.

    First, let's look at the issue of forgiveness. Why is it necessary to forgive in order to achieve success and happiness in this life?

    Well, forgiveness is necessary because, when we are holding onto resentment or blame against others, against ourselves, or against society, we are literally creating a blockage: a blockage that is misdirecting or freezing up our vital energy, energy that could otherwise be used for positive and loving goals. When we use our emotional resources to maintain a negative attitude or belief about ourselves or others, we are actually blocking ourselves from experiencing greater fulfillment.


    We need to recognize that our resentment, hostility, or blame is indeed a major blockage to our self-awareness and self-expression. The fact is that our limiting attitudes keep us stuck in a feeling of being victimized. Our limiting attitudes cause us to concentrate on the past instead of on the opportunities of the present. Our limiting attitudes keep us locked into ways of thinking and acting, because resentment and blame are actually ways for us to avoid taking responsibility for our own lives. When we believe that we are not responsible, we are not able to act with confidence, and in turn we cannot successfully create the results we really do want in our lives.

    Therefore, it is obviously necessary for you to learn to forgive other people for any of the wrongs you feel you have suffered because of them, and it is also necessary for you to forgive yourself for your own shortcomings and failures.

    It is only when you let go of the blockages of blame and resentment that you can begin to perceive the reservoir of love that really does exist within you. It is only when you let go of these blockages that you can concentrate your energies on creating a good, right, and loving life in the present.


    Yes, it is possible to forgive others when they have wronged you.
    Well, the first step in forgiving others is to take a good look at yourself and at your own responsibility for your current emotional problems. Ask yourself this question: "Is there something that I might have said or done to provoke the other person into hurting me?" In other words, did you act superior, antagonistic, or resentful? Sometimes, when a relationship has gone bad, it is necessary for us to apologize as well as to forgive. On the other hand, it might be the case that we are holding onto negative feelings towards another person because we gain some enjoyment or satisfaction from it, there are those people whom we just "love to hate." We might gossip about them and feel vindicated in retelling over and over a story of how they did such-and-such to us. We might justify our anger and ill-will by recalling how we were hurt. Worst of all, we might come to rely on the hidden benefits of our bitter feelings; because when we believe that we are a victim in life - when we really believe that others are out to get us - we come to rely on the pity, help and attention we get from other people.

    The unfortunate side effect is that by using our attitude of being a victim, we not only justify our own unhappiness, but worse, we actually freeze ourselves into our own limiting attitudes, attitudes which ultimately block our chances of ever achieving success and happiness.

    It is easy to blame someone else.
    We get a lot of mileage out of pinning the responsibility on the other guy. The only problem is: we don't get to be truly happy and free. You see, the very act of blaming another person creates a blockage to your own fulfillment. By failing to take responsibility for your own attitudes, you prevent yourself from controlling your own life. Holding onto negative attitudes towards others is like trying to drive a car with your foot on the brake: it may be a safe way to go, but it's sure hard to get ahead!


    No matter what your negative attitudes towards others are, and no matter how these attitudes got started, it is your task to remove the blockages they cause; and you can accomplish this easily and effectively by forgiving others. Once you get over the hump of feeling sorry for yourself, once you give up the hidden benefits that a victimized attitude offers, once you learn to let go, even when letting go makes you feel vulnerable, then you have taken a very major step on the path of your personal growth. Once you begin to forgive others, you will discover the sheer joy of love and freedom. Once you let go of hostility, fear, and hatred, you will come face to face with your own source of inner wisdom and power.

    Forgiveness can become a central force in your life
    When you commit yourself to forgiving yourself and others, that will be an invitation to your Eternal Self to flood your being with the wonder of love, and to make every new day a bright opportunity for you to live happily and creatively.

    It's not that hard to learn to forgive. You can start by becoming aware of how you feel, how you think and how you act around other people. For your habitual thoughts, feelings, and actions will tell you what old, worn-out attitudes are still blocking the flow of your loving energy. Then you can resolve yourself not to be swayed by your old attitudes. For example, if a close personal relationship is suffering, take the initiative and communicate your true feelings to the other person, even if your feelings include disappointment, frustration, or anger. In relationships, if you convey your true feelings openly and honestly, you will remove the blockage to the flow of your love and healing energy. Remember that without the power of love, there would be no relationship to begin with. Forgiving also allows you to see how others are suffering - to recognize how they too, are stuck in negative attitudes that rob them of success and happiness.

    Most of all, forgiveness is an act of pure joy, for when you let go of your blockages, you are then able to perceive your own magnificence.


    Do not overlook the task of forgiving yourself
    With all this mention of forgiving others, you should not overlook the task of forgiving yourself; for you cannot in fact truly forgive others until you have first forgiven yourself. You must learn to forgive yourself for any misdeeds you may have committed and you must learn to forgive yourself for any of your past failures. If you hold yourself to blame for your past actions, or constantly put yourself down because of them; if you punish yourself because you don't measure up to some lofty ideal; if you are not the kind of person you think you should be, then you must let go of these negative attitudes before you can experience love and happiness. Simply put, give yourself a break! Judging yourself severely, or withholding love from yourself is not the key to success!

    Instead, loosen up on yourself. Be willing to feel good about yourself without rationalizing why you should feel good. Take time to do the things you like to do. Make a living doing what you truly enjoy doing. Discover your talents and put them to use wherever you can.

    And when old negative attitudes about yourself creep up, when you hear that voice that says you're not good enough or that you'll never succeed, when you hear yourself talking like this - just ignore it, just let it go! Be willing to laugh at the remnants of your old conditioned thoughts and feelings, and dare to live life for all it's worth!

    This brings up the second part of the "Forgive, Live, Love," motto, and that is the instruction "To Live."

    We need to live and express ourselves actively.
    Let's face it, living and expressing ourselves actively and fully is why we're here on Earth. We're not here to struggle to get ahead, or to suffer poverty and disease, or to fight with one another. We're here to actualize our boundless potential, the boundless potential that we were born with, the boundless potential that, as Eternal Selves, we can tap anytime in order to improve life for ourselves and for everyone else in the world.

    It sounds too easy, doesn't it? How could we have gotten so far off the track if we are here simply to enhance life by actualizing our potential? And how is actualizing our potential going to solve all of our personal problems and the problems of the world?

    Well, the first thing we must realize is that we have our present problems due to the fact that we are not fully using our abilities or living up to our potential. We are not using our potential because of our blockages of limiting beliefs and attitudes acquired in the course of growing up. By these limiting beliefs and attitudes, we have cut ourselves off from the awareness of our inner nature, an inner nature of love and wisdom. Our limiting beliefs and attitudes have so narrowed our vision of our possibilities that we have severely restricted our own flow of Divine energy. This blocked energy has become distorted, twisted, and misused, resulting in disease on both a personal and a social level. Our Divine energy is so blocked, that we have become lost in the pursuit of material pleasures, in the race to get ahead, and in the unending quest for security. Our Divine energy is so blocked that we even fail to use the abilities we do have in order to solve the problems of hunger, poverty, and war. What are we waiting for?


    The solution to both our personal problems and world problems lies within each one of us as individuals. For we are each an Eternal Self, a magnificent portion of the Divine. In order to overcome our blockages to the awareness and expression of our Divine potential, we must stretch our ideas of who and what we are.

    In order for the Divine to become fully expressed in the world, we must fully express ourselves. When we express our love, when we express our unique vision and actualize our potential - then we are expressing the Divinity within us. By expressing ourselves truly and enthusiastically, there is no way for us to fail to enhance the quality of life for the whole of creation.

    Therefore, TO LIVE means to try new adventures that might seem impossible.

    TO LIVE means to imagine what life could be like in your most fulfilling dreams, and then living those dreams to the fullest.

    TO LIVE means to dare to be yourself, to dare to carve out the path that will bring you happiness, no matter what others think.

    TO LIVE is to work and play with all that you are, and never to hold yourself back.

    TO LIVE is to find joy in even the most mundane things in life.

    TO LIVE is to approach every new experience with a positive and affirmative attitude.

    TO LIVE is to expand your self-understanding and good will in everything you do.

    TO LIVE means letting go of the past and not worrying about the future.

    TO LIVE means to be your ETERNAL SELF!


    Yesterday's history. Tomorrow's a mystery. Today is a "gift." That's why we call it "the present."
    What will you do with your gift of today?
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  7. Lori Registered Senior Member

    Forgiveness! Now there is something to start with if you want to understand Jesus. There is no better witness in life to Jesus Christ than the power of forgiveness. And there is no other reason to forgive. If you can forgive the one who causes you the most pain, then you can find God. Jesus is the only one who gives you the reason to forgive, and the peace that it fosters.
  8. Searcher Registered Senior Member


    Good posts! These are guidelines that people of any religion should live by. Thank you for taking the time to post them.


    Um, I think there are plenty of reasons to forgive, and I think TS outlined them very well in her posts.

  9. 666 Registered Senior Member


    On one hand I agree, but on the other I don't
    There a people who's life revolves around being a victum, but the above seems to reflect the other end of the extreem. There are just some things that are unforgivable. If someone diapoints, says something that hurts me, or just plain 'ol piss me off I can forgive. There are things such as the holocaust that just can't be forgiven. To work your self to a point ware it is not a controling factor in our life is one thing, but forgivness can never happen for events like that. Some say it is our chance for perfection that makes us great, but it is not. It is your imperfections and our drive to correct these imperctions. Due to our nature we can never become perfect. Just when we make some head way we die and some ware another child is born. This child must start with no knowlage from those who were here before them. Those of us who have been here for a short while can teach what we know, but we are imperfect. In turn they will learn an imperfect leason.

    Take the above quote for example. That is not forgivness, but it is avoidence. Avoidence will cause it to fester in the back of your mind and rear it's ugly head in other ways. What gets achived?? Nothing!

    And all ways rember, LIFE is not black and white

    [This message has been edited by 666 (edited December 29, 1999).]
  10. truestory Registered Senior Member


    You're absolutely right about the avoidance thing... if you re-read the story, this woman told us that she had more to learn about forgiveness after that point.

    I agree that there are some things that would seem near impossible for one to forgive. However, forgiveness is not a matter of becoming perfect. It's a matter of freedom and health... harboring hatred, anger, resentment or bitterness serves to keep one chained to the event(s) and is actually a form of sustained "self"-torture.
  11. Searcher Registered Senior Member


    I think maybe you are talking about forgetting vs. forgiving. To forget something is to lose remembrance of it, which is something that shouldn't be done, lest we repeat our mistakes. To forgive means to cease to feel angry or bitter toward a person or about an offense. That is important for your own healing, or even the healing of entire nations.

    If you broke your leg in a skiing accident, for example, it's important to remember what you did wrong so you can avoid doing it again. Also, if you can warn others so they can avoid those same pitfalls, that is also beneficial. But to refuse to allow your leg to heal so that you can hang onto that pain and make it a permanent part of you, you are really hurting yourself more than anyone else, though you certainly aren't doing anyone else any good either. And by refusing to allow your leg to heal, you are making it a controlling factor in your life.

    I believe this is the reason it is so important to be able to forgive and let go of the anger and to move forward, although it's never easy.

  12. SkyeBlue Registered Senior Member

    True' -

    Very nice, if a bit long.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

  13. Lori Registered Senior Member


    Hate the sin, love the sinner. Forgive the sinner, no matter how great the sin, for the sinner is a sinner just like you, and God loves us all just the same. No matter how bad a person's actions, or how wicked their intentions, there is still, no matter how far buried deep inside, the goodness and the love that God instills in each of us. If you realize the effect of sin in this world, it would give you the perpective that fosters forgiveness. That's what I meant by Jesus gives us the reason to forgive. Recognizing the evil of sin, and the serious destructive nature of it, and the pain that is caused by it makes me see God. And then forgiving those who commit the sin which causes my pain makes me see God even clearer. 666, if you were to do this with your own pain, it would go away. There aren't many claims I can make like that and be 100% certain, but in that, I am certain. You said something I think in the excuses string maybe? I'm not sure, but you said that you gave your pain to my God, a God that you didn't even believe exists. Now what the hell is that about? I need logic please? I think that what you described really just equates to avoidance. Maybe I'm misunderstanding. Please explain.

    "ET phone home!"
    "Uh, hello Satan?"
    "Hey, your plan worked great! They all think I'm cute!"
  14. 666 Registered Senior Member


    So musch to respond to, but so little time. So I will respond latter with a much broader post.

    To some degree yes you are miunderstanding. It's not that I don't belive there is a God, I just simply reserve judgment for the day I die. Only can anyone realy know the truth. There are times and places for everything. Anger and bitterness do not belong at work, social gatherings and and other places, while I must attend at least one of theses (work) I chose to leave my anger bitterness in a symbolic place. Some what like a sugested partice that employers a given for an employee that is having a hard time leaving thier personal life at home. They give them a ribbon to tie around a tree branch out side of the office. It may sound stupid, but these symbolic emotional dumping grounds accualy work. It gives a place or someone to "leave" all the crap untill an aproprate time and place. This help?

    My life could have been black and white, but I had to color it.
  15. Lori Registered Senior Member

    Yes, that helps, and that doesn't sound stupid at all. I know that you've gotta do something with it. I asked my husband to leave the house the DAY BEFORE I started my new job. I spent the entire first month just trying not to cry at my desk, and doing a pretty lame-o job of that. It's a good thing I'm smart, or I would never get by.

    I'm not trying to say that if you are saved in Christ, that you never feel pain. You still feel pain, sorry, everyone does. But the new perspective that you get regarding that pain changes it, and often the consequence of it. Identifying it for what it really is, what it is truly attributable to, changes it into something reconcilable, and you are able to truly forgive (eventually, as it is not as easy as one-two-three, and I only had to deal with divorced parents), and your heart will be healed, and you will see God. I'm tellin' ya! You assume that you can not know, that it is impossible to know, the truth about God until you die. You are wrong. Trust me on this, I know. I used to feel the exact same way you do, and now I feel the total opposite. What happened? Come on, I can take it. Do you think I got brain-washed? Abducted by aliens? Involved in a cult? I don't even go to church! Nope, sorry, wrong answer. You can know. All you have to do is truly do some soul-searching and listen to the word. There will come a point if you are open-minded enough when you can't deny that God is speaking to your heart, so you will take a little baby-step of faith, and you will pray. And that's all it takes baby! Don't be a chicken poop! I promised I wouldn't cuss anymore. If you look in the right places, you will find HIM! I'm not kidding.

    I dare you to watch some TBN sometime. Try to avoid the people with the big white hair. Here are some really good preachers that I like to listen to:

    Joyce Meyer - Life in the Word (she's funny, and really knows her stuff if you can stand looking at her attire)

    D. James Kennedy - Coral Ridge Presbyterian
    Excellente! Minimal charisma which I appreciate so much, and he really knows his stuff too. I think he's on at like 10 or 11am on Sunday mornings.

    Please don't watch Rod Parsley. What a drama queen.

    Try to stay away from any sermons that descibe the term "blessings" as monetary or material wealth, or any sermons which are "sung" as if they were a blues song (maybe that's just me?).

    Ed Young and Adrian Rodgers are pretty good.

    "It Is Written" is good with Mark Finley.

    John Hagee is really good. I love watching him, he's such a fiery little fat dude. I think I had to forgive him once for wrinkling up his nose while saying the word "homosexuuuuuual", with his southern preacher twang, but other than that he's very good. We all make mistakes ya know? He is also big into prophecy which I love to learn about.

    Gerald Mann is most excellent. He's such a sweet little mellow gentleman. He'd be a great grandpa.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    He's very, very smart and well-educated, and well-traveled, and a very good speaker. No charisma! Gotta love it!



    What about prophecy? How is it that you can ignore all of the fulfilled Biblical prophecy? Just the history of Isreal and the Jews alone should be enough to convert anyone! It's very interesting stuff. Revelations too, since we're like, uh, living in it.

    "Go Jesus, go! Go Jesus, go!"

    I finally get to be the cheerleader that I always wanted to be but could not, as I was not a fluff chick.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    [This message has been edited by Lori (edited December 31, 1999).]

Share This Page