Forgiveness is such a powerful part of relationships. It's fraught with a lot of misunderstandings, however. The end result may not actually be forgiveness. At least not always. But if you apologize and are genuinely sorry, you have done your part. You have taken accountability for your words or actions. And you have set yourself free from the chains that hold you when you know you've wronged someone. Whether the other person forgives you or not is almost beside the point. Truly, it's gift when it happens. However, the important part is to do your part of the forgiveness dance. That is the only part for which you and I are responsible.
It's important when we do apologize to search our hearts and be sure we're authentic and genuine about it. Sometimes it's important to allow a bit of time to pass after our words or actions so we can process what we've done and apologize from a place of authenticity. We're not always ready to do that immediately after we've said or done something to hurt another. We might still be a bit self-righteous about what we've said or done. Or we might be angry at whatever preceded it. Take time to search your heart and be sure you're ready to apologize.
Let's remember, too, that forgiving ourselves is an important part of the equation. For we aren't truly free if we're laboring under a load of guilt either. There are so many parts to this forgiveness dance, aren't there? It's not as simple as it appears. But it's always worth doing.
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