How to Do the Painful Dance of Forgiveness

Forgiving is a dance. I compare it with the swaying of waves. I come and go between forgiving and forgetting.

But I cannot…

Forgiveness comes with pain, remembrance. Forgiveness comes with a side of loss. Because in order to forgive you must lose something. A relationship. Love. Feelings.

It’s a smooth, gentle dance that hurts so badly. It comes when you lose something, yes it does! I went seeking for stories of forgiveness; true forgiveness. All of these stories came with the loss of something special. The loss of something that the person did not want to let go, but had to.

A dance. Where every move is lost as it passes. The shift from one position to another. A shift where a move is already gone, lost…moved on. A new move brings to completion the previous one. Even if you go back to the original move, you know that it is truly already gone. You can go back, you cannot turn time back.

Loss. Loss and well because of it.

God, but why do I have to lose so much. How come “they” get to stay while I get to go away? They do not remember me; they forgot about me. So much fun inflicting the pain. Dancing at the tune of betrayal, they dismembered my heart and self-confidence. The knife shifted deep in my gut. The blood of my confidence came gushing out; along with my heart. Feelings left me, pain sprang forth from me until I felt nothing. Numb, cold. Alone.

But forgiveness comes with loss.

Loss. Loss and well because of it.

Dance with me. I forgive you.

I forgive you for the loss that left me with nothing but my thoughts. Thoughts that would either heal me or destroy me. I found out how hard I was to love. Those that loved me had to learn to love me in the madness of the pain and loss.

I was hard to love. LOSS. Could I ever forgive all that was done? Was I willing to lose some more? Was I prepared to accept that in that forgiveness I would lose so much, recover so little, and change? Why did I have to change? The wounds were mine. The blood loss was ALL MINE! Why did my enemies gain, while I lost so MUCH!?

In that loss, I remembered Cain and his brother. The one that he danced with before gushing his entire love out. He killed his brother, Abel, with the love that only a brother could give. “AM I MY BROTHER’S KEEPER!” I heard him whisper. I heard him say it. I heard him scream it.

Yet the day came. The day came when God exclaimed! “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground!” Genesis 4:10

But I can dance. I can forgive with a sway of a dance, with the waves of the sea.

I have lost so much, and I will never get it all back. I will never fully recover what WAS. LOSS.

Then I heard a whispering voice. So low I could hardly perceive it. I danced and the voice said:

Mark 8:355 “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.”

So…dance with me.

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