On Forgiveness

posted by Momo Fali on March 6, 2016

We Catholics are in the home stretch of Lent. I used to give up chocolate or beer, or something else that would slim me down in time for spring break. Part of me offered something up out of faith and part of me offered something up out of vanity. At least I’m honest.

This year I decided that instead of giving something up, I would try to do better; as in, improving upon being human. I’m not doing so well.

My thought was that I would focus on forgiveness. I have a lot of anger and resentment and, honestly, on top of it being WRONG to be filled with that much hatred, I’m just tired of feeling this way. It’s draining and unbelievably bad for my soul.

So I started out on Ash Wednesday hopeful and feeling good about improving myself. I felt good – clean, for lack of a better word. There is something to be said for a fresh start.

Unfortunately, it didn’t last long.

By that evening I had lost my cool and said horrible things that didn’t make me feel better and certainly didn’t do any good. This forgiveness stuff is hard.

Ultimately, I have to find a way to get to this place so I keep trying every day. I need to not only turn the other cheek, but also forgive the person who slapped me in the first place. The problem is that I am a master grudge-holder.

I think I’ll get there. I can honestly say I am thankful for where I am today and appreciation is a start, right? RIGHT? Being grateful has been a journey and I’m happy to say I’ve truly arrived. The road wasn’t easy, but the destination has a pretty stellar view.

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And, knowing that someday I’ll feel the same way about forgiveness is what motivates me now. I am aware that it’s going to feel really good when I finally get to that place.

But, I’m not going to lie. It would be a real bonus if I’d go down a size.

 

    Comments

  • Jamie@southmainmuse


    Anger will eat us up from the inside out. I too am trying to let things go. Because as hard as I try, it spews out when some thing yanks the lid off the pressure cooker. For Lent this year I decided to memorize Psalm 34. It has 22 verses. I’m on my second go through trying to concentrate on a verse a day. It’s going to take more than 40 days to have it all in the sieve that is my brain these days. But I do have the first verse down. “I will praise the Lord at all times, his praise will continually be in my mouth.” So when the blues beckon or anger starts I say my verse and stop and let go and praise God. It helps.

    • Momo Fali


      If I could “like” blog comments, I would like this.

  • Jessica


    I gave up swearing for Lent. I’ve been spectacularly unsuccessful as predicted by anyone who knows me. But I’ve talked a lot more to God because I now always stop and ask for forgiveness for my inability to fulfill my Lenten commitment. I think forgiving is a tremendously difficult thing to do and do right. Be kind to yourself if you aren’t able to dance through this exercise – to quote Pope John XXIII – make use of the medicine of mercy. And make sure you are using that medicine for you, too.

    • Momo Fali


      I think swearing is more admirable than chocolate. I couldn’t do that. Ever.

  • Marianne Ball


    Forgiveness is so hard because there’s a trust piece in there as well. In this life, we will continue to be hurt and disappointed. I’m learning that God is the only steadfast, unchanging force in my life. Once we get that…it’s easier to not expect so much from humans. We’re all broken and stupid and selfish. I’ve done better since I’ve adjusted my standard to ‘how does God want me to handle such and such?” Once my standard is God’s standard, it’s easier to forgive the humans in my life. God bless you, girl.

    • Momo Fali


      Oh boy. I love this.

  • Laura in Little Rock


    You remember when the upstairs bathroom was leaking through your kitchen light fixture? Multiply that by a few thousand, this has been my Lent. My 2,000 sqft downstairs flooded with a sewage overflow (not on my homeowners insurance, praise be). We’re 2.5 weeks into living in our upstairs 1,700 sqft with no washer dryer and only 2 ba/2bd for our family of 5.
    Oh and at age 17 and with a Sailor’s Pottymouth, I gave up “obscene language” for Lent. My roommate & suitemate found it hysterical, it was the hardest thing I’ve given up for Lent. I generally give up sugar in my coffee because it’s a early morning reminder that it’s Lent – every day.
    I can’t say I’ve been constructive this Lent; I’m impressed by your example.
    …and I’m so glad you’re back.

    • Momo Fali


      I’m so glad you’re back too!

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