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Forgiveness Myth #3: To forgive, we must bury our anger.
Truth: To forgive, we must face and acknowledge our anger, not bury it.
Yoda’s advice to his Jedi followers is almost the worst thing you can do with anger. Many people believe that Christians should bury their anger, deny it, suppress it, “forget” about it. None of those things work. The anger remains and festers inside like a cancer. Eventually it comes back out as illness, depression or an explosion of violent emotion.
Denial is a cheap substitute for grace. Lying to ourselves about what we really feel is what we do when we don’t know what else to do. But Jesus is strong enough to handle the truth. He knows what’s really inside each of us anyway.
The first step to forgiving is to acknowledge how angry we really are. Only then can we find grace big enough take that anger and replace it with peace.
More next time…
These thoughts are adapted from Chapter 5 of Dwight’s book, Spiritual Self Defense. More info here:
Answer from last time: Joshua, Elijah and Elisha each parted the Jordan River and crossed over on dry ground.
New question: What do Daniel, Zechariah and Mary all have in common?