So, what is a ministry of forgiveness?
I would have to start with, “it is a lifetime process where we forgive others for hurts whether willful or not.” If you speak to secular counselors and shrinks, they will all concur that forgiveness brings much personal healing.
I know I watched a loved one stress out frequently because of careless, controlling or judgmental remarks from others close to them.
It was all consuming for this person, while the perpetrator went on happily and cluelessly. She was just a bossy person, who thought her ways were the best, she was a hotshot executive. At the end of the day, this was a loving and caring person who really didn’t know better.
So, whatever happened to the alleged victim who had no self esteem?
I told her constantly to let it go, look at the other person and note she does it to the entire family. And they either ignored her or gave it back. Then afterwards everyone was best buddies again. Why and how? Forgiveness comes easy for some people and they are generally much more healthy overall.
Years ago I worked in a busy ICU.
This day I was sooooo busy, but even in my business I saw a new patient who seemed terribly depressed and oppressed. Something darker than the depression seemed tangible to me. I don’t know how to explain what I sensed as I don’t know how to explain spiritual things we do not see with the eye. Anyway, I was very aware of this tormented soul, but too busy to chat with him.
Praise God, a priest went in and spent alot of time with him. I thought for sure this fellow would lighten up. But when I went by his room, the darkness and sadness prevailed.
Finally, I went in to chat. This is what transacted!
Me: hi, are you catholic?
Me: did you have confession?
Patient: yes mam
Me: well why are you so sad, you have be cleansed by the Blood of the Lamb. All heavens rejoicing.
Patient: Lady you don’t know what your talking about. Long time ago in Korea we were walking with woman and children. One of the guys started going nuts, raping the woman and killing all of them. We, I went along with this. I see the faces of these people in my dreams. When I came home to my family, I became an alcoholic. My wife divorced me, I lost my job and went homeless. For 20 years I have lived with this horrible, despicable memory that I participated in. I confessed this over and over. But still see their faces.
Me inwardly thinking: wow, why did I come in this room? And the Lord prompted me to take out my Benedictan crucifix which was under my scrub jacket. So, I did and I looked at the cross, then held it up for him to see.
Me: who is this?
ME: WHY IS HE ON THE CROSS?
Patient: He died for our sins.
Me: who is Jesus?
Me: Whose sins did He die for?
Me: Yours included?
Me: So what is wrong with you?
Patient: I cannot forgive myself.
Me: So, God almighty dies on the Cross and forgives you your sins, but you cannot forgive yourself?
Patient: oh my gosh lady, you are right. Well, I will see you someday in heaven.
And I saw light enter his dark eyes and felt something lift put of his room. ess
He had been forgiven a long time ago at his first confession, but held onto the guilt and shame. Finally, he realized he had to let it go. When he was able to forgive himself, the evil oppression was lifted by Jesus. Jesus is the light of the world, don’t miss His gift of forgiveness.
Yes, the Minstry of forgiveness is an ongoing process. So, start peeling away the layers and let Jesus in. Did you go to confession yet? Well, heck get going.