It is so easy to ask for forgiveness from people when we make mistakes. It is easy to accept the grace that others give to us. For some reason, when it is our turn to give grace and forgive, we struggle. I am sure most everyone has a story of someone from their past who has hurt them. Sometimes, we hang on to the hurt of the past and we hold a grudge. I understand how people can hang on to something that has hurt them. I definitely get it because my own story involves forgiving two people and giving them grace. My story involves giving a second chance to two people that need grace and forgiveness the most.
My parents had me out of wedlock. My dad was not involved in my childhood. I found my dad my freshmen year of college. Over the past eleven years, we have been building a relationship. It is one that I struggle with. I go back and forth on whether or not I even want a father-daughter relationship with him. When Rob's dad passed away this past December, God knocked away at my heart. At first, I didn't want to listen to God telling me to forgive my dad (yet again) and to continue working on the relationship with my dad.. God was speaking to me and telling me that life isn't guaranteed and I need to make the most of the relationships I have in my life. After wrestling, I finally decided to forgive my dad and show so much more grace to him. What my dad has done in the past, should not have an impact on the future.
This past Saturday, I went to Louisville to spend time with my dad and my dad's side of the family. I was blessed to have that time with them. My grandparents (my maternal grandparents who raised me), were very receptive to the fact that I was spending time with my dad. All I can say is, I have never felt the Holy Spirit work more than He did on Saturday. He moved and helped flow the day in a way that I am so thankful for.
The second person who I have given a second chance to is my mom. My mom has suffered with mental illness, for as long as I could remember. She also struggled with alcoholism. She changed her life after being diagnosed with cervical cancer. She was so close to losing everything that she knew she had to make a change. Just like with my dad, I continually to forgive her and show her grace.
Both of my parents have come a long way since they were 19 and 20. They have changed their ways and they have proved to me that they are better people. I am the one that needs to show God's love to them by continually to forgive them and show them grace. I can finally say that I am not letting the past of my parents be an excuse as to why I don't reach out to them everyday and make sure that they know I love them. God sent His son to forgive me of so much, including holding grudges that didn't need to be held. God has shown me way more grace than I deserve. I hope that my parents see that I have forgiven them and have showed them grace.
This is my story. This is my testimony. I hope that it helps one of my readers to forgive someone and show them grace. We live in a world where so many people make mistakes. We need to forgive just as Christ forgave us. We need to show grace in the same way that God shows his people grace. Ultimately, we need to love others just as God loves others.