The Wilderness Path to Wholeness
Archbishop Tutu (who knew something about forgiveness) wrote:
To forgive is not just to be altruistic. It is the best form of self-interest. It is also a process that does not exclude hatred and anger. ... However, when I talk of forgiveness, I mean the belief that you can come out of the other side a better person. A better person than the one being consumed by anger and hatred. Remaining in that state locks you in a state of victim hood, making you almost dependent on the perpetrator."
Forgiveness isn't forgetting, it doesn't ignore accountability, but it does open up our lives to rebirth.
How difficult it is to choose grief in order to let go of our hurt. And sometimes, we just can't do it. We can't do it by ourselves - God calls us to forgive, but God doesn't leave it to us alone. God works in our lives to enable us to forgive. Does God do this because the other person needs forgiveness? Maybe. But I think God does this because God knows we need - for our own healing and wholeness - to forgive. God walks through the wilderness with us - experiences our pain with us - to lead us to the promised land on the other side.
What kind of love is this that God would love us so much that he would be willing to walk with us into pain in order that we might be whole?