Steps to forgiveness
The process of forgiveness can be a liberating experience. We have the choice to forgive or not to forgive and no one can force us to do either. Conversely, if we want to forgive someone no one can stop us no matter how poorly they may act. This ability to forgive is a manifestation of the personal control we have over our lives. It is nice to reflect upon and feel the respect that we have been given to be able to make such choices.
The ability to offer forgive proceeds along four steps. At step one you are filled with anger. At some point in your life you have been hurt and you are mad at the person you feel wronged you. You blame the person committing the wrong for how you are feeling. It is their action and not your choice of response that you feel is at the cause of your anger. You have forgotten that you have a choice as to how you will react, or are so angry that you are convinced that it would not be right to forgive the offense.
The second step towards forgiveness emerges when after feeling angry with someone for a while you realize that the anger does not feel good to you. It may be hurting your emotional balance or your physical health. Or you wish to repair the damage to the relationship. So you take steps to forgive. You may begin to see the problem from the other person’s point of view, and understand his\her motives for their actions, or you may simply decide to let the problem go. In either case after an extended period of time you are no longer angry and you have forgiven the person with whom you were angry.
The third stage of forgiveness comes after you have seen the beneficial results of forgiveness and you choose to let go of your anger. In this stage the choice is to feel the hurt for a short period of time, and then work to either repair the relationship or let go of seeing the situation as a problem. In either case you decide to forgive because you have had some practice with it and see the benefit in your life....