We can suspend the notion that forgiveness is always accomplished by a simple word of pardon or a single act of the will. Learning to forgive can take a significant amount of time even if we want to do it quickly. More often than not, rapid pronouncements of forgiveness are like unripe fruit, having no sweetness or nourishment in them. They are neither fully formed nor quite real because we haven’t worked through any inner process of change. Lasting forgiveness is embedded in the learning of a whole new way of life in Christ. It is connected to attitudes and practices like truthfulness, humility, perseverance, generosity of spirit, and compassion.
—Marjorie J. Thompson, The Way of Forgiveness Participant’s Book (Companions in Christ Series) (Upper Room Books, 2002)
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Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.
—James 5:16 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Lord, guide me to know and learn from my emotions: my anger, my fears, my grief, my joys, my love. Show me how to master them so that they will not master me.
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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