Have you ever been called on by God to forgive someone something so huge that is seems insurmountable?
You know that it is just beyond you, you don’t even desire to be able to forgive them, and yet there’s the tug of the Holy Spirit.
That happened to me a few years ago, and I honestly didn’t think it could be done. However, I started to pray that the Lord would soften my heart and help me to want to forgive. I prayed for them, until forgiveness was something I desired and then I learned that to forgive someone results in an abundance of grace from our heavenly Father.
The greater the act of forgiveness, the greater His love and mercy.
Oh my, the peace that I received! Now it’s hard to remember that time and the pain I was in. With forgiveness came detachment and a certain freedom. It was my first powerful experience of Spiritual Freedom.
During my recent Ignatian Prayer in Daily Life exercises, I came to understand the three types of sin: mortal, serious and venial. The first and latter were familiar, this term “serious”, however, was new. The “serious” sins are habitual sins or behaviors that hinder us being able to truly live as God wants us to.
It is both a wonderful and horrible part of the spiritual exercises; in which we really get to know ourselves and what is preventing us from making complete confessions, and fully receiving God’s grace. These sins cover a multitude of behaviors, such as procrastination or excessive escapism, yet they all have roots in the seven deadly sins.
I learned that some of these habits were so ingrained in me that to confess them and fully repent seemed insurmountable, just like the experience of forgiveness.
I’d been practicing these bad habits for over 20 years, not realizing just how harmful they were and what an easy target I was for the devil! How in the world was I going to detach myself from them? However, the job must be done, and as my retreat came to a close, I could start to see a life without them.
I encourage you too, to go into the tomb of Lazarus and see what is binding you to this world. What is preventing you from coming forth and being who God wants you to be? Let us strive to be free of all these attachments and live our lives to our full potential.
“So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away;
Behold new things have come.” 1 Corinthians 5:17