I now know, WHAT I have to do, but HOW do I do it? How do I truly let the hot rock go? HOW do I practice forgiveness?
I had a counselor tell me once, “Emote the emotion. Say it, until it becomes a reality in your heart.”
Remember when your kids were little and you would make them say they were sorry? My children have since informed me that they sure didn’t mean it. But in my imperfect parenting skills, I was teaching them to take care of hearts – theirs and others – by beginning the process quickly.
Did you know science says the voice most believed by your heart is your own? The words spoken will begin creating a pathway for the freedom of forgiveness. You may not feel it initially, but confessing forgiveness begins the process of healing.
Sometimes you have to know the WHY before you can truly let it go.
Jesus wants us to love Him with ALL our heart. When we get offended and we are looking straight at the situation that we think offended us, it can be a real eye-opener to stop and ask your heart, “Why did this bother you so much?”
I sometimes call it the conflict between my “Big Girl” and “Little Girl.” When we experience pain, especially at a young age, and didn’t have the tools to comfort it, that pain, the memory of that injustice stays buried deep within our heart’s vault of sub-consciousness. That area of our heart can be arrested in development. Although the rest of us grows up, there is a little girl emotion that is stuck. And, our Heart-Guard does everything it can to keep us safe from that happening again. Illogical responses are usually a sign of trauma that is stuck. (A definition of trauma is pain that is stuck in time and space.)
5 Keys to the Freedom of Forgiveness
Key 1 – Identify It
When the eyes of your heart realize that it is time to let an offense go, recognizing the injustice, the pain, or perceived wrong is a good place to start.
- Being able to admit, that the offense really hurt, makes the heart’s emotions feel valued. Jesus cares about the brokenhearted. Being able to talk about it, or process it in a safe place, (I journal a lot) gives my heart the voice it longs for.
- Looking at “Why did this bother me? Why did this hurt” often reveals the truth to my heart and how my heart has been tempted to sin in response.
- Sometimes, I even ask, “When was the first time my heart felt offended about _____?” Asking this question will so often reveal a memory of someone or something similar.
Key 2 – Admit and Repent
- True forgiveness will not be able to be accomplished until we own our sin in the situation.
- Confessing our sinful responses and asking God to forgive us will prepare the way for our hearts to be empowered to let go of the “hot rock.” It helps us to realize we need forgiveness, too.
- If there is a dark spiritual attachment, cast it away from you. Tell it to go, in the name of Jesus.
Key 3 – Let It Go
- Release the “Rock Thrower” from the jail of your heart.
- You can say the prayer, “Lord Jesus, I forgive ________ for __________ .” Be sure to say exactly what you are forgiving them for. It unclamps your fingers from the hot rock. It may take a while for your emotions to connect with your words.
Key 4 -The Cross
- Call the “hot rock” dead on the cross.
- You can say the prayer, “In Jesus’s name, I call this offense and my illogical responses to death on the cross. I let all bitterness, pain, and disappointment go to the blood that Jesus shed for my sins.”
Key 5 – The Resurrection
What makes our God unlike other God’s is Sunday morning. He rose from the dead and so can we too can rise from our ways of death.
- Now, you can say the prayer, “Lord Jesus, I ask that you would restore my heart to be who created me to be. Lord, reverse the old pattern of offense in my mind and heart and show me a new way. What is the Truth about the situation? Let me see this through Your eyes. “
- I like to often ask Jesus to give me His perspective, His truth about the situation. He often surprises me. But His Truth really does set my heart free to love like He loves and respond differently the next time.
I hope you have enjoyed this blog series from the pages of my heart’s freedom story.
Your heart was created to sing in harmony with the Lover of Your Soul. I pray that my story has blessed you with perspective for your own freedom story.
I leave you with this.
Consider if the Great Commandment was,
“Value the Lord your God with ALL your heart, mind, soul, and strength.
Value others the way you value yourself.”
Value the voice of your heart. It is beautiful. The One who calls you His darling Beloved One thinks so.