DEAR CHRISTINE: Special letter on forgiveness
A special request has been made to reprint an edited version of today’s letter in Dear Christine and permission has been granted by www.anewthingministries.com.
“On April 14, 1985, my children and I arrived home from church to find that my husband of nine and a half years had left me and his children for another woman. This woman was my best friend. This was a devastating day for us. As a Christian, I asked God to intervene and to forgive my husband.
I truly believed God would restore our marriage and family. However, that didn’t happen. My husband didn’t just leave me, but stopped seeing our children.
I immersed myself in the Lord and thought I had forgiven my husband, but whenever the memory of him would come to mind, I would be filled with anger at what he had done. You see, the day he left was also my birthday.
I covered up my hurt by trying to be strong for my children and concentrate on their needs. I didn’t allow the hurt to be healed.
One night while watching a Christmas movie, a statement was made that stirred up something deep within me. I began to sob uncontrollably. I asked God what this was about and He revealed to me that the hurt and pain that entered into me the day my husband left, was still deep within me.
As I cried He showed me even though I thought I had forgiven my husband, I wasn’t completely free. The hurt and pain kept me from fully releasing him and allowing total forgiveness to fill me. God also caused me to see the deeply buried hurt and pain that came upon my children and kept them from forgiving and releasing their father.
That night God brought total healing to me and I was able to fully release and forgive my ex-husband.
God showed me that the hurt and pain from the offence were being pushed deeper within my spirit and soul. He showed me whenever my ex-husband’s name was mentioned I would speak words of anger and point out his shortcomings. Through the years I covered all this up nicely through my speech, but within me I was still angry.
We can say we forgive a person all we want but if we do not allow God to heal us, the offence cannot be removed and we are unable to fully release the person or offence to God.
Eight years ago, my ex-husband had a severe stroke and heart attack. The doctors said he would not live. My oldest daughter called me the day after I told her what had happened and said she had to see her dad. God impressed on me that I needed to lay hands on him and pray for his healing, so I made arrangements to travel with my daughter.
My hands were on fire as we went to the hospital and I believed I was to lay hands on him that day. However, his wife wouldn’t allow me in to see him. The next morning the heat and fire were gone from my hands but we visited him nevertheless. The doctors told my daughter he would never leave that hospital alive, but I didn’t receive those words. I laid my hands on him, prayed, and spoke into his ear as we were leaving: ‘I forgive you for everything; now forgive yourself.’
Three days after I had prayed and laid hands on him, he came out of the coma. Still, the doctors said he would not survive. I knew God had spoken to him while he was in that coma and God gave him back his life. Even though he is still unable to walk, he is serving God and ministering to many about the miracle God performed.
After all these years, I can say that I have totally forgiven him and I have experienced a freedom like never before. I pray daily that God will also bring total healing and freedom to my children.
So many times we know we must forgive but if the hurt and the pain are not dealt with, if we don’t allow God to heal, we are not truly walking in that forgiveness.”