Sunday, January 15, 2017

Why Forgiveness is Not About Closure But Resolution

“Hatred stirs up strife, but loves covers all offenses.”
— Proverbs 10:12
One of the purposes of conflict resolution is forgiveness, so quarrels are stopped quickly, for if they’re prolonged, hatred is stirred up, which leads to strife. And this is a lamentable result in any event; reprehensible between, or involving, Christians, who are devoted to their Lord of love.
What love does in us, whenever we know there’s discord between us and another person, is it compels us to do whatever we can to resolve the matter.
Love understands that forgiveness must take place between aggrieved parties.
Love knows that dissension cannot be simply left as it is, as if it had never occurred.
Forgiveness can be thought of, then, as something that cannot simply be one way. One could be prepared to forgive, or to seek forgiveness, to resolve the impasse, but unless the other party comes some way to acknowledging the damage, little progress can be made.
Simply put, no closure can be obtained for one when the other party brings closure.
When one person has nothing else to say or do, the other person is marooned into finding closure when their needs were not, are not, and won’t be considered or cared for. It stirs up a brooding hatred in the person, who could be trying to forgive, simply because of the lack of regard the other person has of resolving the matter to love’s standard of mutual satisfaction.
Love covers all offenses by agreeing that disputes must be resolved to parties’ mutual satisfaction. Hatred, however, is content to let justice meander into the wasteland of self-serving strife.
Taking our ball and going home leaves the person holding the bat with nowhere to go.
Love does not win unless everyone wins.

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