February Special II -- How many times to forgive?

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“Forgiveness doesn’t excuse their behavior, forgiveness prevents their behavior from destroying your heart”

How many times to forgive?

The February series is a 2-minute short read with opinions from two diverse individuals on everyday relationship and marital issues. How many times would you forgive? Would you ever?

He said….

My opinion generally about forgiveness was first shaped by the Christian doctrine which states especially that we must forgive over and over again! Yes! See excerpts below;

Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times? “Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”

It literally puts no cap to the number of times to forgive!

Another opinion suggest that, it is completely possible to move on and heal from trauma without forgiving the perpetrator. In fact, forcing oneself to forgive, or pretending to forgive when you really haven’t, can actually be counterproductive to healing.

Now, forgiveness means different things to different people, however, it involves a decision to let go of resentment and thoughts of revenge.

In relationships, being hurt by someone, particularly someone you love and trust, can cause anger, sadness and confusion. Hurt in any form such as cheating, lying, betrayal, deceit and the likes have become a recurring decimal and almost inevitable. It is only fair that forgiveness plays a critical part of the healing process. It is true that the act that hurt or offended you might always be with you, but forgiveness can lessen its grip on you and help free you from the control of the person who harmed you.

If you dwell on hurtful events or situations, grudges filled with resentment, vengeance and hostility can take root. If you allow negative feelings to crowd out positive feelings, you might find yourself swallowed up by your own bitterness or sense of injustice. And this could be inimical to your own progress in life.

But to forgive is divine, it can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt you. Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting or excusing the harm done to you or making up with the person who caused the harm. Forgiveness brings a kind of peace that helps you go on with life. So forgive and let go. Don’t hold it in- No caps!

And what did she say?…..

She said……

I can forgive you, but want to have nothing to do with you anymore. Nobody is perfect and no relationship is without it’s own problems that will require forgiveness every now and then, especially if you want a lasting relationship. Little misdeeds, slight infractions, genuine intentions that come out wrong, all those things can be forgiven.

I agree with you on the biblical injunctions on forgiveness, but the bible also said that should we continue in sin because grace abounds? 

Yes, forgiveness is a gift you give to yourself and not necessarily because you want the other person back.

This is why we have deal breakers that must have been communicated over time. 

By the way, the context of what is being forgiven is critical in our expectation for forgiveness. You cannot continue to break your significant other’s heart and expect forgiveness every time! That is wickedness! 

When you hurt people, you don’t get to dictate how they react as well as if and how they choose to forgive you. Remember they are not Jesus and they are not required to die for you, Jesus already did that.

While I cannot tell you what to forgive and when to forgive, I will say this; if their actions make you sad constantly, if you are being taken for granted at every opportunity, if you always have to question your sanity and self-worth, if you are afraid to speak your mind for the fear of retaliation or what might happen, if you feel trapped. You have your answer!


Please join the conversation!


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5 thoughts on “February Special II – He said/she said”

  1. AbdulSalam Rukayat folake

    I can only forgive when I feel d remorsefulness of d person, u won’t dare trample on my self worth at will nd expect m to forgive u, cos dats done on purpose….. Who dares that!!
    Nice write up kinmi
    Short nd concise

    1. I love the part you mentioned forgiveness is a gift…and shall we continue in sin and expect grace to abound;God bless you for your words

  2. Adedamola Ilori

    I completely agree and I feel more relieved knowing that forgiveness is possible and forgetting may not be possible.

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