Lessons from my grandma.
My grandmother’s birthday is September 9 and she passed away a few years back. Her death was one of the most painful experiences of my life. One thing I did in order to deal with the grief I was experiencing, was to focus on the lessons she left for me throughout her life. This is one of those lessons.
Recently I heard someone saying, “Whatever anyone has done or will ever do to hurt me in any way, I have already made the decision to forgive them.”
When I first heard that statement, I immediately thought it was just one of those theoretical babbles that we spew that is impossible to live by. As I reflected today on the life of my grandma I realized that even though she never uttered these words, she actually lived these words. My grandma is one of the easiest persons to please, just show her ONE act of kindness and she’s indebted to you forever. She forgives in a heartbeat. If she’s upset with us and we rub her neck or knees( she’s afraid of both) she starts laughing and that’s the end of the dispute.
She had an elephant brain, she remembered everything, (in fact anything we wanted to remember we asked her about it) and what was always amazing is when I mentioned things that I said or done to her that were not some of my proudest memories, she said she can’t recall me doing anything of the sort. It is like I never did it because they were erased from her memory. In fact, she always said, “I’m going to use the good to cover the bad”when someone did anything to hurt her. And so instead of remembering them based on the “bad” she would speak consistently about the good they have done.
She has been hurt in some of the worst ways imaginable and her interaction with those who have hurt her belie the depths of the hurt. She always told us, if you can’t forgive others, then God can’t forgive you. She always said, “I understand, but for peace sake let it go”. Her life was an example for many and I pray that I will also live her example throughout my life.
Ephesians 4:31-32 – Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
Mark 11:25 – And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
Colossians 3:13 – Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.