"Yet a time is coming
and has now come when the true worshipers will worship
the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the
kind of worshipers the Father seeks." - John 4:23

My Heavenly Daddy is healing
me from the inside out.

Transparency is Real.
Many times painful.

Daddy let me be secure in You only!

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

WILL I EVER FEEL TO FORGIVE


I often wonder will I even come to the point of actually "forgiving" my brother who molested me? I do not feel any anger towards him. Am I normal to feel this way?

Sure I see how my life turned out and how the abuse had an effect on my thinking in the relationship(s) area. How I ran away from intimacy. How fearful I was to become involved.

It is just now angering me that I missed out so much in life where I could have gotten married, but the fear of intimacy kept me in bondage! Do I blame my brother for this? I just do not feel it!

How can I forgive someone that I am not angry at? Is this wrong if I never have the feelings to forgive? Sure the other crap that was going on at the same time of the abuse, my parents divorce did not help matters any. My emotional state went downhill from there. There would have been no way I could have succeeded in any type of serious relationship. My mentality was heading in reverse as I retreated into my own world. So, do I blame my brother for this with regards to the intimacy part?

I have been pondering for a while about posting on this topic. Just did not feel comfortable about it until now.

25 comments:

  1. Forgiving does not come easy, I know that.. as much as I want to.. we might forget but never totally.. Keep praying for that strength to move past it and then perhaps forgiveness will find it's moment. Christ could do it in his immense pain.. we have to strive for it.
    It's good you can talk about it, it's one of the many first steps to healing.
    BM

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  2. You are really someone very special. I would just walk away and never wanted to be back to such a brother. I am sorry but sometimes we just cannot forgive. We can forget and live our own lives, but it would be bad to us just to forget. Facts will not dissapear. Unless we see it.

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  3. Anger when used as a stepping stone for something better is good.....forgiveness is a gift you give yourself. You can forgive on your own, doesn't mean you have to have a relationship with your brother or sit across the dinner table from him but you still can forgive. This will be your choice JBR, oh but the freedom that comes when you reach the end of this journey will be more precious than all the gold or jewels in the world......, it is going to be a pleasure to walk with you on this journey.....:-) Hugs

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  4. Life is not for getting; life is for giving.

    Life is not forgetting what happened; life is forgiving what happened.

    Anger is not a requirement.
    Being done wronged is a requirement and you were done wronged to. Someone has to bear the consequences of all wrongs.

    Forgiving means YOU bear the consequences of what wrongs were done to you. It sets you free everyone says. But for many people, forgiving is a dealbreaker.

    But not for God.
    "Forgive US our trespasses as WE forgive those who trespass against us".

    Is there a higher ideal than to love your enemies; forgive them?

    When you do that for your brother (there is no requirement he know, be informed, or contacted), but when you do that, the entire purpose of God in your life comes alive.
    You are forgiven ALL of YOUR trespasses forever.

    No one will ever know them, for God will wipe away the secrets we did wrong, and do not want revealed.....because we forgive them their trespasses against us.

    Jesus said that when he was asked:
    How should we pray?

    Our bodies need daily bread to live.
    Our souls need forgiveness for the same reason.
    "Forgive us (God) our trespasses;
    as we forgive those who trespass against us".

    With a clean etch-a-sketch heart like that, we are able to be led from temptation....
    and delivered from evil.

    Matthew 5:7-16 says a lot on this. I generally do not use "The Message" and prefer NIV, but The Message covers this well:

    7"You're blessed when you care. At the moment of being 'care-full,' you find yourselves cared for.

    8"You're blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.

    9"You're blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That's when you discover who you really are, and your place in God's family.

    10"You're blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God's kingdom.

    11-12"Not only that—count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don't like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble.

    Salt and Light
    13"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You've lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage.
    14-16"Here's another way to put it: You're here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We're going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don't think I'm going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I'm putting you on a light stand. Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven."

    ~~~The Message

    JBR, be salty; be light.
    Forgive and watch the reaction of God, not your brother.

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  5. I don't think there is anything wrong with you. Forgiveness is such a big thing.I'm not there yet. I believe God will someday lead us both to that. In time.

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  6. We both wrote posts about our brothers today...my little brother (the one my post was about) was my 'hero'. I recently, over my vacation, realized I have no adult relationship with him that I still idolized and worshiped the ground that he walks on based on childhood actions. And he didn't do anything special other then he was just ultra kind and was the ONLY one out of my family that I remember didn't harm me (and my oldest brother) in any way so I am processing seeing him like everyone else now. He is another adult man in my life who has no idea how to not be abusive/healthy in his inner actions with me. My point...feel to forgive is an interesting concept...brother stuff interesting..my older brother was the exact opposite of my younger brother...sorry I have probably shared to much! As usual thank you for listening. Love and Blessings.

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  7. I never thought I'd forgive my step father for the abuse my mother and I both suffered at his hands. But I did, by the grace of God and Al-Anon. I no longer feel angry or resentful. I can see him with compassion. That's a blessing. Resentment hurts no one but me. Thanks for being real.

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  8. JBR--

    Forgiveness for me is a moment by moment choice. Some days it's second by second. thanks for sharing...

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  9. In all honesty I don't think I will have any healing from forgiving my abuser until I feel the anger and the hurt for what he did to me. Only then will I truly be able to work through those feelings and arrive at forgiveness. You can be angry about the effects, but still avoid being angry at the person. It's a rough road to travel. I'm still nowhere close to even being angry at my abuser, let alone approaching forgiveness.

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  10. nothing wrong , I don't thank i ever forgave my step grandfather, I know the bible say we have to so our sin can be forgiven but it been hard for me. I still have the same nightmare.

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  11. In my experience I got down and dirty and let myself remember the feelings I had in the times of abuse in my innocence and this was enough to stimulate a HUGE plight of anger. I recognized...I was only a child, innocent. Then, continued recovery work led me to set boundaries and yes to FORGIVE...I don't hold anger about the past and I don't hold anger about now because I have dealt with the past emotionally and I have GOOD healthy boundaries so that I am not allowing the abusers to abuse me anymore (setting one of the biggest boundaries of my life just recently) and then I go into the cycle again. Hope this makes sense, but I do agree that FORGIVENESS is for YOU. It isn't really for the other person, it lifts you out of the burden and releases the ache and trouble going on in the inside of your heart & body.

    This of course has been my own experience with getting over the abuse and into freedom.

    I am hoping for you.

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  12. Rita Espinosa MDJanuary 07, 2010

    The act that hurt or offended you may always remain a part of your life, but forgiveness can lessen its grip on you and help you focus on other, positive parts of your life. Forgiveness can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt you.

    Forgiveness doesn't mean that you deny the other person's responsibility for hurting you, and it doesn't minimize or justify the wrong. You can forgive the person without excusing the act. Forgiveness brings a kind of peace that helps you go on with life.

    RE

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  13. One of the most important issues that we all face in life is the question of forgiveness. It is important because, whatever our reputation in moral matters, we will never be free of the need of receiving forgiveness from God and from one another, and also of giving it to one another. In your case JBR your struggling to feel first. Reading other comments the forgiveness is for yourself not your brother. Continue to seek God in this area.

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  14. I don't know if you talked with him about it, but if not, I think it has to happen before any forgiveness can occur. You don't have to forgive him.

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  15. Actually this is the most difficult question you have ever posed here.

    Before forgiving anyone...apportion out responsibility. Who is responsible for the actions? What were the circumstances that allowed the molestation to occur? Who is responsible for what?

    You have to do this dispassionately. Step outside the emotional being in the circumstances and walk all around the events, looking at them as if you are an outsider simply witnessing.

    Then set the responsibility where it belongs.

    First...forgive yourself for taking responsibility for the actions of another (quit blaming yourself). That is not your weight to bear. Then forgive yourself for any part you may have had in making events progress in the way they did (if any).

    Second then and only then are you free to forgive anyone else for their responsibility for their actions.

    From other things you have said here it just may be that your brother was as much a victim of the circumstances as you. But that is why the dispassionate walk around is necessary, so you can see all sides not just your own.

    Forgiveness is not about the actions it is about letting go of the responsibility and blame.

    You are really firing on all 8 cylinders now kiddo. You are moving ahead faster than you realize.

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  16. "You don't have to forgive him."
    ~~~comment above

    "This blog is Holy Spirit inspired."
    ~~~JBR

    "Test everything. Hold on to the good."
    ~~~1Thessalonians 5:21

    "27But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. 28 Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you.

    32 “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them! 33 And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much!

    37 “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven."

    ~~~Luke 6 (verses noted beside words)

    Bottom line? Forgive others, and you will be forgiven. We all have skeletons in our closet for we all sin everyday. Our skeletons are forgiven forever and sealed by God,....when we do the same and forgive the skeletons we know, for they were done to us.

    I do not sense that forgiving is your problem yet. Feeling the need to forgive is the problem. WHY should you forgive another who has done terrible deeds to you?

    Because we all do terrible deeds to one another and forgiveness releases us to be free of that, and be forgiven ourselves.

    Truth??? You DO have to forgive.
    Some people just can not do it. Ever!
    They choose to accept that their own sins will not be forgiven....and all of us sin every day.

    You bring the Kingdom of Heaven to Earth with each forgiveness. That,....is Holy Spirit inspired.

    Test everything.
    Hold on to what is good.
    Forgiveness is good.

    A Catholic once told me "to forgive and I MUST, he proclaimed. Afterall, our Pope forgave the man who shot him".

    My reply? "He did not forgive the guy who shot him while the bullet was still in his belly. Forgiving that guy came long after, when he was healed".

    When the pain in your belly from the bullets of others stops, forgive.
    Since you have no feeling, you have no pain.
    It is time to begin forgiveness.

    Easy to say? Yes.
    Easy to do? No.

    The conversation was 19 years ago, and I am only now beginning to forgive that person.

    Ps. The Catholic was wrong. I do not have to forgive because the Pope did. I have to forgive for God said so. I just never felt him saying it. I felt him saying the person was bad and evil. I did not test everything.
    God is merciful and filled with grace. He does not tell folks to NOT forgive the evil and bad among us. For all of us are evil in different ways. Evil people do sins. Only one person never sinned.

    I will pray for you JBR that your heart is warmed by an ember from God, and that you are not trapped 19 years as I was, in Not forgiving.

    When you pen your prose and pain and thoughts, you release many others who have the same pains, from differing evils done.

    Do not be confused by comments that follow, but be encouraged that what was done to you, is being used by God, for good in other people through you. See you in heaven.

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  17. This has helped me.

    Forgiveness is not a denial or saying it's okay.
    Forgiveness is not letting someone off the hook - unconditional boundaries.
    Forgiveness is not justifying or accepting their behavior.

    It is giving up my right to hurt them for hurting me.

    May I send you a book that has been extremely helpful to me? There is a section titled "The most mysterious gift of grace: forgiveness"
    The whole book "Truefaced" is really good.
    Just email me if you would like me to send it to you. maryefreeman@hotmail.com

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  18. Wouldn't it be nice to have a clean slate, a new start? Just pray that God gives you the power to use forgiveness. You need to forgive yourself. It sets you free.

    When you are ready, you will know it. It's not about letting your brother off the hook, but letting you move forward with your life.

    I know it has been said, but it is true...If we don't forgive, God will not forgive us.
    Pray about it and may you come to closure.

    Peace and love,
    Pam

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  19. JBR,

    Forgiving is part of the healing process for you. It is in no way, something for your brother and in that same process it doesn't mean as well that you have to forget and try and pretend it never happened. Just remember when you are ready, this is part of the healing that you need to continue to move forward.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

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  20. Dear JBR, I am 100% with the laking man. He wrote what many years ago my therapist told me. It helped. Emotions are important however it is very importan tot to place everythign there where it belongs. And that was NEVER you. Hugs

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  21. I wonder that as well JBR. Right now, I don't really feel like I want to forgive. I still hold so much bitterness towards my uncle and ex-husband. I know that I don't want to say that I have forgiven and it not be true because God knows my heart. I believe He knows how I feel and accepts the fact that I am trying to work through the healing process and that He doesn't hold it against me. It's a very difficult question to answer for me as well.

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  22. Forgiveness is a choice, a decision, Not a feeling. I do not feel like forgiving my father, But I desire to release that burden of carrying around the unforgiveness.
    That being said, I think in major hurts like ours, forgiveness is a lifelong process. We have so many layers of hurt. As each layer reveals itself and I suffer the pain of it, I have to forgive my father all over again. As long as we hurt, it is hard to forgive.
    We need God's grace.

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  23. You may never feel ready to forgive. I agree that forgiveness is a choice. You can say I don't feel like I can or that I want to forgive my brother.... but I chose to obey you God, You will have to put those feelings in me. And he will. And when those feels of doubt and unforgiveness start to come back upon you - refuse them. I made the choice years ago to forgive my uncle for sexual abusing me. It wasn't easy and it took awhile. There are still times when those feelings try to come back on me. I just know for me, for my healing, I need to forgive and no t let those feelings come back.

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  24. Forgiveness is key for you to have a life of freedom. I know all about forgiveness of this kind and I will not lie and say it's been easy. Forgiveness does not mean that you will have certain feelings. Forgiveness does not mean that you don't need to keep dealing with how this offense hurt you. I am still in this process. I pray that as you lay it all out that you will find true healing in forgiveness. I love your honesty and what you have shared here really does encourage me. I am sure I'm not the only one. :)

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  25. I believe forgiveness is for the victim not the perpetrator. To not forgive is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

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