A Lesson in Forgiveness
With all the turmoil in the news these days citing race, religion, political party and gender as the cause – I’m feeling grateful to my parents for teaching me life-lessons about unconditional love and forgiveness. I believe it is the way to solve all that is at odds with peace.
I was once convicted of a crime I did not commit because of a neighbor who falsely testified she had seen me start a fire in another neighbor’s garbage dumpster. I was 10 years old in an all-white, predominantly Mormon/LDS neighborhood – and the police believed the woman who had lied. They came to our home and interrogated me for what seemed to be hours.
In the end, my parents believed me but still allowed the police to punish me by making me sand and paint the badly scorched dumpster to keep the incident from escalating further. A valuable lesson I didn’t understand at the time, but later realized how fear can hold us captive.
For me, this was a lesson in forgiveness – first to myself for having violent feelings of anger toward the woman who falsely accused me, and toward the police who believed her lie. And then forgiveness to all parties for their part in spawning my anger. I wanted justice and never got it in the form of vindication, but got it in learning to let go of fear.
This was an early start on my journey toward unconditional love. I believe the only solution to an incident like this is gratitude that it didn’t escalate further, and allowing our hearts to love all parties involved so the anger has no place to grow.
Your comments are welcome below. If you wish to discuss this with me privately click here.
This is a re-post on this BLOG of a post I made on Facebook on 12/16/2015.