Heal your heart, practice forgiveness

Heal your heart, practice forgiveness
There is healing power in forgiveness.

Recently a dear friend betrayed me by creating all kinds of chaos, drama, and distrust within my family.  As a mom of six daughters, that's not too difficult to do with our feelings as fragile and frayed as our skirts and dresses. A peaceful, pleasant, family occasion turned ugly with people using "fighting words" which, fortunately, couldn't happen with people in different suburbs, cities, and states. Nonetheless, the damage was done. Yet another rift created. And another time we vow to just be through with the culprit. Usually in times like this, we thank God there's no funeral, wedding, graduation, or holiday in sight, so it'll be months, maybe even years if we're lucky, before we really have to deal with each other again.

But that's the old me.

For years now I've been practicing spiritual truths and living a Christ-centered life which means at times like this, when I used to want to fight somebody for getting out of line, now I use that same energy to get on my knees and pray.

And that's not always easy.

I mean, when somebody lies on you, or says things to your family members, and your daughters, to intentionally hurt them, I can turn into the meanest "Mama Bear" to protect me and mine, needing someone to cue the comic's line "Oh know you di--in't!" But they did. They did and said hurtful things that have angered me and mine to the core. And so what do I do? What must I do? I must be an example of peace and love that I write about, preach about, teach about, and pray about all the time.  I must practice forgiveness. And this isn't always easy by any stretch of the imagination. But I realize, that as a mom of six girls, that EVERYTHING I do my girls see as either an example of the love I claim to practice, or the hypocrisy of religion. I am their living example of Christ.

Don't clog your arteries with toxic memories. Heal your heart. Practice forgiveness.

Don't clog your arteries with toxic memories. Heal your heart. Practice forgiveness.

And then add to that, that I know as a health and fitness spokesperson, that many of the health issues that people face today are not just due to poor diet and sedentary lifestyles. I believe a lot of people's arteries are clogged with toxic memories, and filled with hurtful words and deeds done by others; or even more difficult to heal from, mistakes they themselves have made.  Sure, there are drugs that we can take and diets that we can follow, and probably need to, but in addition to that, you can heal your heart and soul and simply practice forgiveness.

That's what I'm going to do.

And as best-selling Christian author Max Lucado teaches in his novel "You Will Get Through This," I decree and declare that me and my family will get through this.  It won't be painless. It won't be quick. But God will use this mess for good.  I know that any other belief will simply deposit bitterness, wrath, anger, and hatred that could ultimately become a blockage in my own heart. I have learned that hurt people hurt people, but I don't have to hurt myself by what they say or do. I can heal. I can love. I can forgive.

I have NO IDEA how God is going to bring healing to my family and restore the love and trust we had just finally come to experience. But I do know love doesn't fail, so I will just watch and see what God does, knowing that I have done my part to free myself, heal my heart, and let God's love cover the offense. The rest, and the best, is yet to come.

IFAIH, E

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