Just Apply Compassion {A Guest Post}

{Today we hear from journalist and blogger Tiffany Roney on the topic of forgiveness and a little secret she learned to let go of pain and hurt. When she sent this post to me a few weeks ago, I had no idea it would powerfully work its way into my life with perfect timing. Tomorrow I will talk about the impact of this post and the surprising things I learned, as well as some exciting turnarounds in one of my most estranged relationships. This is great stuff so grab a cup of coffee with me and let’s listen.}

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There are songs about it. The Bible says to do it. In fact, it’s the basis of our faith, but what does it really mean, and how do we really do it?

I interned with a counseling program for about a year – a program that emphasizes forgiveness – but I recently realized I hadn’t really known how to truly forgive.

In a forgiveness struggle this year, my dad gave me a book about forgiveness that suggested giving up your rights to whatever was hurt or stolen. While this method can be very helpful for some people and has helped me in some ways, it didn’t do much for me in this struggle.

Other times I aimed to conquer strife, I followed the technique of saying aloud, “I forgive [name] for [action],” but I was generally just listing through offenses, feeling all the anger and self-pity all over again. When I was “done,” I once again suppressed the issue – only to find it return at a later time.

Friends and family would suggest “just letting it go,” but most of the attempts simply turned into suppression as well. What wasn’t I getting over anything?

On Saturday in California, I found the key: compassion!

How did I miss that?

I was searching on the computer in my aunt’s loft for forgiveness advice and came across this website. What I gleaned from the article: to look at the situation with compassion for the other person.

A couple of tactics I found helpful: think of what the person was going through in that moment, and remember the reality that sin is not abundant life. Thus, that person was not experiencing abundant life during that situation.

This method of looking at “what they were going through” is not equal to trying to “understand” it per se, which can lead to thinking you’re justifying their actions. In my experience, that only causes a person to be more tempted to justify their resentment. Justifying begets justifying. Rather, it’s about caring.

Result: awesome. I feel so free.

As a bonus – or a part of this freedom? – I find myself being more open-minded and creative. If you want a mind and heart at peace, go ahead. It’s available.

Find your freedom.

How do you forgive? What benefits of forgiveness have you received or found in your own life? Let us know in the comments below.
Tiff
Tiffany Roney enjoys beauty, writing, and cycling. She is better at starting projects than finishing them. Her day job and free-time “jobs” are pretty much the same: writing and photography. Tiffany believes stories are more powerful than facts, fiction can ring as true as reality, and mercy triumphs over judgment. Want to hear more from Tiffany? Check out her blog at: http://tiffanyroney.blogspot.com/. 

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3 thoughts on “Just Apply Compassion {A Guest Post}

  1. Hey friend! So excited to see this! A small requested tweak… the link to my blog didn’t work when I clicked on it. Here it is again: tiffanyroney.blogspot.com. Thanks!

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    1. Very true. Compassion is the key to forgiveness. As it was the compassion of God that lead Him to send is perfect son to the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. Scripture says that Jesus saw the multitude and had compassion: He met their needs be it healing, food, or (as I believe) with Holy kisses and hugs. It is easy to become offened by the “sinful” actions of others (which is often stirred by pride), however, God’s counter was always to respond in Love. To forgive is to give life. He has made us “Givers of Life!”

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    2. Thanks for the heads up, Tiff. I tried to insert the link a few different ways and I couldn’t make it work. So hopefully just putting the direct link in should help, although it’s not as pretty.

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