Tuesday, January 5, 2010


I just love it when something unexpected happens and it gives me a new perspective.
Forgiveness is something I struggle with. I don't really understand it. Intellectually, I get the concept but I intertwine it with condoning and that makes it difficult for me to grasp.
We've all heard that forgiveness is not for the other person but rather to free ourselves. I didn't really get that until the other day when some bonehead was tailgating me. I think I'm getting old as I find that impatient (or just plain stupid) drivers really get on my nerves. Where does tailgating get you? Does it get you to your destination faster? How does it really pay off? I get angry and I become spiteful. I slow down sometimes just under the speed limit. I make sure to come to a full, 3 second stop. I watch the "offender" in my rear view mirror. I use all this energy and...for what? Who is being the bonehead now??
I felt a twinge of anger and defiance as I pondered my next move. I pulled over and waved the tailgater around me. Did that mean I was condoning his actions? No. It simply meant that I didn't want to waste MY energy worrying about him riding my bumper and I certainly wanted to stop acting childish by playing games on the road.
Hmmm....alot like forgiveness. No more games. No more trying to punish the other person. Because all it does is occupy my mind, sap my energy and surrounds me in negativity. While I felt a momentary sense of indignance letting him pass by me, I was able to quickly let it go with the realization that it brought me peace. Oohhh....that's the point. Tailgater no longer matters.....but I released myself from all that negative energy. I love perspective.


April_optimist said...

For me, forgiveness does not mean condoning what happened nor does it mean giving the other person a chance to hurt me again. It simply means letting go of the anger that's eating me alive. Note: First I needed to feel the anger, needed to say, yes, this really was bad, this really was wrong, this really never should have happened to me. Only AFTER that I could begin to forgive. Forgivbing, to me, means taking all the energy and using it in ways that make me happy, make my life better and let me move forward. Hey, as they say, living well is the best revenge. I say that facetiously but I also know I am happier NOW than my abusers ever were--right up until the day they died.

VICKI IN AZ said...

Beautifully Put!