Forgiveness

A significant flaw in my development as a Christian was a lack of forgiveness. Not only did I have a difficult time letting go of the past, but my physical and emotional wounds as a child and young teenager made me want to isolate myself rather than engage in healthy relationships. My marriage was a constant struggle because I had a tendency to keep track of my husband’s mistakes and would not give up trying to get my own way when we got into a conflict. Many times my husband got the cold shoulder when we went to bed because I was still angry from a fight we had.

Proverbs 10:12 contrasts two ways of dealing with conflict. It says, “hatred stirs up strifes: but love covereth all sins.” This verse refers particularly to the love between man and wife. Solomon indicates the choice to stir up strife or cover one’s sin is based on your feeling toward that person. The word translated hatred, sânê’ (saw – nay´) means to be unloved. “The word covers emotion ranging from bitter disdain to outright hatred (8130). Whereas love causes us to cover up or overlook an offence, hatred rouses us to action, it makes us want to fight.

If someone would have asked me, do you love your husband? I’m sure I would have said yes, but my behavior was consistent with hatred more than it was love. The problem with emotions is that they can be suppressed and hidden within the unconscious mind for many years. I didn’t actually feel a lot of what was going on inside of me while I was married. It wasn’t until I exploded that I realized I was angry and even then I sometimes blamed my anger on things that had nothing to do with the real issue.

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