―A Spiritual Perspective
   on Forgiveness‖
                Presented by:
      Matt Williams, PCC-S, CT, CG-C
          C...
Business First…
• Welcome
• A word about…
 1.Pagers, Cell Phones & Other devices.
 2.Restroom Location.
 3.Help yourself t...
Objectives
• We will define ―forgiveness‖ in light of
  what it is and what it is not.
• We will discuss the ―road blocks‖...
Alexander Pope
            18th Century English Poet




―To err is human, to forgive, divine.‖
Mark Twain
              Author




―Forgiveness is the fragrance the
violet sheds on the heel that has
           crushed...
Susanne Somers
             Actress




―Forgiveness is a gift you give
          yourself.‖
George Herbert
            Welsh poet, Priest




―He who cannot forgive breaks the
bridge over which he himself must
    ...
A Personal Exercise
• ―Facts on Forgiveness‖
   o First, Do this exercise alone
   o Then, in small groups share (BRIEFLY)...
Reflection
• Generally Speaking:
  o What kinds of emotions do you think
    people considering forgiving or not
    forgi...
Reflection
• Generally Speaking:
  o   What kind of defense mechanisms might be at
      play with people who cannot forgi...
Mental Health and Forgiveness
• Unforgiveness is considered to be a core
  component of stress resulting from
  interperso...
Mental Health and Forgiveness
• Stress + mental illness + (Unforgiveness)
  = $80 Billion in mental health care*
• Stress ...
Health and Forgiveness
• A 2001 Study revealed
  o A correlation between reviewing hurtful
    memories and the increase o...
Health and Forgiveness
• A 2003 Study
  o 108 College Students replicated the 2001
    Study
  o Similar findings were see...
Harvard Women‘s Health Watch
• The January 2005 article entitled: ―5 Positive
  Health Effects of Forgiving‖ stated:
     ...
Research
• More research is needed to examine the
  benefits of forgiveness.
• Smaller studies have shown the potential
  ...
Big Deal?
• It is estimated that $276 billion is spent by
  industry, due to alcohol and drug abuse.*

• It is estimated t...
Big Deal?
• ―The Terrible Cost of Unforgiveness‖ by
  Larry Philip Nims, Ph.D.
  o Continued psychological pain.
  o Block...
What is Forgiveness?
 • ―Forgiveness is an invitation to redeem
   failure‖ Doris Donnely, Learning to Forgive
 • ―Nationa...
What is Forgiveness?

 • ―Forgiveness is One‘s awareness of his/her need
   for restoration of self and relationships with...
What is Forgiveness?

 • ―…a gift freely given in the face of a
   moral wrong, without denying the
   wrong itself.‖
 • ―...
Forgiveness is a
         Spiritual Issue

Forgiveness is a part of our world‘s spiritual
              belief system.
Buddhism
• Forgiveness is a practice for removing unhealthy
  emotions that would otherwise cause harm to our
  mental wel...
Judaism
• Ideally a person who has caused harm, needs
  to sincerely apologize, then the wronged
  person is religiously b...
Judaism (con‘t)
• When asked by an offender for
  forgiveness, one should forgive with a
  sincere mind and a willing spir...
Islam
• The word Islam is derived from the Semitic word slm
  meaning ―peace‖ and forgiveness is a prerequisite
  for genu...
Hinduism
• The concept of performing atonement from one's
  wrongdoing (Prayaschitta — Sanskrit: Penance),
  and asking fo...
Christianity
• In Christian teachings forgiveness of
  others plays an important role in
  spiritual life.
• Forgiving oth...
Christianity (con‘t)
• A beautiful expression of forgiveness and
  understanding is St. Francis of Assisi‘s prayer:


―Oh ...
The exception…New Age!
• God = You
• It acknowledges many gods and goddesses.
• The Earth is viewed as the source of all
 ...
The exception…New Age (con‘t)
• Anything negative a person experiences
  (failures, sadness, anger, selfishness,
  hurt) i...
So…
• We know what forgiveness is…
• We understand it is a cornerstone of many
  world belief systems.
• New Age belief sa...
What Forgiveness is NOT!
• According to Dr. David Seamands:
  o Overlooking the wrong that has been done.
  o Excusing or ...
Forgiveness is no F.E.A.S.T.*
• F = Forgiveness is not FORGETTING
• E = Forgiveness is not EXPLAINING
• A = Forgiveness is...
What Forgiveness is not!
• Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says
  ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖

•...
What Forgiveness is not!
• Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t
  says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from
  healing‖
...
What Forgiveness is not!
• Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t
  says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from
  healing‖
...
Philip Yancey


―Not to forgive imprisons me in the past and
locks out all potential for change. I thus yield
control to a...
What Forgiveness is not!
• Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t
  says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from
  healing‖
...
What Forgiveness is not!
• Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t
  says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from
  healing‖
...
What Forgiveness is not!
• Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t
  says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from
  healing‖
...
What keeps us from Forgiving?
• Misconceptions of what forgiveness is not.

• Revenge and hatred:
  o Blaming others for t...
What keeps us from Forgiving?
• FEAR!
  o There may continued unwanted, irrational behavior
    against me.
  o It‘s permi...
What keeps us from Forgiving?
• Excuses:
  o If I forgive then the wrongdoer escapes actions
    of restitution, which I n...
Too much pain to forgive.
• Fact is…until someone is forgiven, the
  pain and hurt continues because we have
  not release...
What keeps us from Forgiving?

• Thinking we have when we have not (bad
  fruit still exists).


• Lessons of unforgivenes...
What keeps us from Forgiving?
• An Unforgiving personality
  o   Traits of the unforgiving personality
        A Negative...
What keeps us from Forgiving?
 • Lack of motivation
 • Moral Superiority
   o   The issue is to big to forgive.
   o   I a...
A Forgiving Personality
•   Positive Attitude/Thinking
•   Healthy Self-esteem
•   High feelings of self-worth
•   Quality...
A Forgiving Personality
•   Good sense of immediacy
•   Healthy assertiveness
•   Willingness to accept responsibility
•  ...
Grace
• The Greek word for grace is ―Caris.‖
• Means: ―non-meritorious or unearned
  favor, an unearned gift, freely given...
A Forgiving Personality
• Good sense of immediacy
• Healthy assertiveness
• Willingness to accept responsibility
• Relivin...
The ―How to…‖
• EDUCATE YOUR CLIENT!!!
          On all the following!

• First, recognize the human crisis
  o Am I willi...
The ―How to…‖
• Second, understand the ―wills‖ of the
  crisis.
   o I ―will‖ forgive (An act of personal
     volition an...
Colossians 3:13 (NIV)

13 Bear with each other and forgive
whatever grievances you may have against
one another. Forgive a...
The ―How to…‖
• Second, understand the ―wills‖ of the
  crisis.
   o I ―will‖ forgive (An act of personal
     volition an...
The ―How to…‖
• Second, understand the ―wills‖ of the
  crisis.
   o I ―will‖ forgive (An act of personal
     volition an...
I ―will‖ receive new feelings!
• Express new feelings regardless if you
  feel them or not.
• Act on new feelings regardle...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the process too!
  o The decision to forgive is the crisis point.
  o After the decision is ma...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of
  Forgiveness!
  o Stage 1: Hurt
  o Stage 2: Hate
  o Stage 3: Heal
  o Stage 4...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 1: Hurt
     You‘ve been hurt and like most people,
    ...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 1: Hurt
     Ask a simple, probing question: "Do I
     ...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 2: Hate
     Hate is our natural response to any
      d...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
   o Stage 2: Hate
       There are two kinds of hate: passive and...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 2: Hate
     Aggressive hatred.
       This is much str...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 2: Hate
     Passive or aggressive hatred; we do
      n...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 2: Hate
     Healthy anger can be a sign that we
      a...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 3: Heal
  o But how…
The depths of How to…
• Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖
  1.Write the name of the offender & the offense.
  ...
The depths of How to…
• Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖
  1.Decide to bear the burden of each person‘s
    s...
Galatians 6:1-2

1 Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin,
you who are spiritual should restore him
gently. But watch you...
The depths of How to…
• Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖
  1.Decide to bear the burden of each person‘s
    s...
The depths of How to…
• Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖
  1.Destroy the list. You are now free.
  2.Don‘t ex...
The depths of How to…
• Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖
  1.Expect positive results.
  2.Thank God for;
    ...
Add.. ―commitment‖
• Help your client to decide/commit to…
  o Not seeking revenge.
  o Not dwelling on the offense.
  o S...
The depths of How to…
• Help someone with forgiveness: The 4
  phases of helping.
Uncovering
            Phase



Outcome                Decision
 Phase                  Phase



           Working
      ...
Uncovering Phase
• Processing the wrong doing.
• Assisting the client in uncovering the
  emotional pain, anger, hurt, etc...
Decision Phase
• Explore the possible damage of
  unforgiveness.
• Explore the possible positive outcomes of
  extending f...
Work Phase
• Grieve the pain of the injury.
  o   Pain is the injury to self, betrayal, secondary
      losses, etc.
• Ref...
Work Phase
• Develop action plan to offer goodwill to
  the wrongdoer.
  o Acts of mercy, generosity, moral love, etc.
  o...
Outcome Phase
• Help the client to realize the emotional
  relief of forgiving the offender.
• Help the client to realize ...
Forgiving those who
          are not with us.
• We can forgive those not with us (dead).
• Help the client understand tha...
Forgiving ourselves
• More difficult due to shame and self-
  hatred.
• Again, as counselors, emphasize the ―will‖
  neede...
Forgiving ourselves
• Perhaps the root is in unfinished business
  with someone who has died.
  o   May need to confess it...
Forgiving ourselves
• Dr. Seamands suggests these questions:
  o ―Will you right now ask God to give you the
    grace to ...
Forgiving ourselves
• Points to keep in mind:
  o No one‘s perfect…not even you.
  o Everyone has regrets.
  o Your mistak...
Forgiving ourselves (con‘t)
• Points to keep in mind:
  o Habitually blaming yourself means you‘re
    stuck in the past.
...
Forgiving God
• Strange? – He didn‘t do nor would He
  ever do anything to wrong or hurt you.
• Inadvertently we probably ...
Forgiving God
 • When or if those things are experienced,
   admitting it is difficult to near impossible
   for some.
 • ...
Forgiving God
• The sin is not to feel it…it‘s what we do
  with the anger that makes it sin or not.
• Our anger says some...
Facilitate this anger with God
• By…
 o   Communicating that God can take it.
 o   Allowing your client to express it.
   ...
Job 42:2-6

2 "I know that you can do all things; no plan of
yours can be thwarted. 3 You asked, Who is this
that obscures...
What about getting Forgiveness?
• Let‘s examine ―The Prodigal Son‖
• The Story (Luke 15:10-32)
• The steps to obtaining fo...
Steps
• Step 1: Have a purpose.
Luke 15


17 "When he came to his senses, he said,
'How many of my father's hired men have
food to spare, and here I am st...
Steps
• Step 1: Have a purpose.
• Step 2: Make a plan.
Luke 15


18 I will set out and go back to my father
and say to him: Father, I have sinned
against heaven and against you....
Steps
• Step 1: Have a purpose.
• Step 2: Make a plan.
• Step 3: Confess.
Luke 15


21 "The son said to him, 'Father, I have
sinned against heaven and against you. I
am no longer worthy to be call...
Steps
•   Step 1: Have a purpose.
•   Step 2: Make a plan.
•   Step 3: Confess.
•   Step 4: Accept Responsibility.
•   Ste...
Luke 15


21 "The son said to him, 'Father, I have
sinned against heaven and against you. I
am no longer worthy to be call...
Steps
•   Step 1: Have a purpose.
•   Step 2: Make a plan.
•   Step 3: Confess.
•   Step 4: Accept Responsibility.
•   Ste...
In getting forgiveness keep in
                   mind…
• Don‘t expect or demand a certain response.
• Find the right time...
Forgiveness Tools
•   Journaling.
•   Forgiveness Imagery.
•   Sharing our FORGIVENES Story.
•   Ritualize your forgivenes...
Video Clips
• 4 Clips of ―Spiderman 3‖
  o   Clip 1: The wrong by ―Sandman‖
  o   Clip 2: Spiderman forgives ―Sandman‖
  o...
More Forgiveness Tools
•   Reward yourself for forgiveness.
•   Change the channel.
•   Express your self.
•   Act on your...
The ―How to…‖
• Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness!
  o Stage 4: Come Together
  o If you can…
Romans 12:18

18 If it is possible, as far as it
depends on you, live at peace with
everyone.
Reconciliation?
• Come together if you can, but
  remember:
   o Forgiveness is one person.
   o Forgiveness ≠ reconciliat...
Reconciliation?
• Come together if you can, but remember:
  o Both persons have to be fully invested
    in reconciliation...
Last Thought!
• A report from the University of Miami and
  Hope College reminds us of the following:
  1.Forgiveness is a...
Questions/Comments?
Thank You!
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

306 a williams presentation

2,134
-1

Published on

Published in: Health & Medicine
0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total Views
2,134
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
99
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

306 a williams presentation

  1. 1. ―A Spiritual Perspective on Forgiveness‖ Presented by: Matt Williams, PCC-S, CT, CG-C Clinical/Spiritual Director
  2. 2. Business First… • Welcome • A word about… 1.Pagers, Cell Phones & Other devices. 2.Restroom Location. 3.Help yourself to more food/beverages. 4.The workshop (it‘s yours)
  3. 3. Objectives • We will define ―forgiveness‖ in light of what it is and what it is not. • We will discuss the ―road blocks‖ of forgiveness. • We will explore the mechanics of forgiveness and how to facilitate the process.
  4. 4. Alexander Pope 18th Century English Poet ―To err is human, to forgive, divine.‖
  5. 5. Mark Twain Author ―Forgiveness is the fragrance the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.‖
  6. 6. Susanne Somers Actress ―Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself.‖
  7. 7. George Herbert Welsh poet, Priest ―He who cannot forgive breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass.‖
  8. 8. A Personal Exercise • ―Facts on Forgiveness‖ o First, Do this exercise alone o Then, in small groups share (BRIEFLY) your thoughts on the questions. o After sharing time the True/False Questions… Will be answers immediately. But the discussion of the answers will happen throughout our evening.
  9. 9. Reflection • Generally Speaking: o What kinds of emotions do you think people considering forgiving or not forgiving may face? o What ways do you think being unable to forgive has on a person (physically, emotionally, spiritually, relationally, intellectually, and socially)?
  10. 10. Reflection • Generally Speaking: o What kind of defense mechanisms might be at play with people who cannot forgive?
  11. 11. Mental Health and Forgiveness • Unforgiveness is considered to be a core component of stress resulting from interpersonal (me & others) or intrapersonal (within me) offenses. • Stress = decreased mental health. • Unforgiveness may increase levels of guilt, shame, anger, regret, etc. • Forgiveness = reduced stress + positive adjustment.
  12. 12. Mental Health and Forgiveness • Stress + mental illness + (Unforgiveness) = $80 Billion in mental health care* • Stress + (Unforgiveness) = Increased cost of physical health care • Physical Illness + Mental Illness = Clinicians needing to address forgiveness in their need treatment planning. * Total cost for 1996 according to 1999 reports by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
  13. 13. Health and Forgiveness • A 2001 Study revealed o A correlation between reviewing hurtful memories and the increase of stress responses (measures of stress response including Electromyography or EMG, heart rate, blood pressure) o When subjects were encouraged to think forgiving thoughts those same measures of stress diminished.
  14. 14. Health and Forgiveness • A 2003 Study o 108 College Students replicated the 2001 Study o Similar findings were seen.
  15. 15. Harvard Women‘s Health Watch • The January 2005 article entitled: ―5 Positive Health Effects of Forgiving‖ stated: Reduces stress. Better heart health. Stronger relationships. Reduces pain. Greater Happiness. • Article added, ―…[these] have been scientifically studied.‖
  16. 16. Research • More research is needed to examine the benefits of forgiveness. • Smaller studies have shown the potential health benefits of forgiveness, including o Decreased anger and negative thoughts o Decreased anxiety o Decreased Depression and Grief o Decreased vulnerability to substance abuse
  17. 17. Big Deal? • It is estimated that $276 billion is spent by industry, due to alcohol and drug abuse.* • It is estimated that $300 billion is spent by industry due to the results of stress.* • It‘s a guess…but maybe forgiveness is needed. * Reported by the 2003 Grief Index
  18. 18. Big Deal? • ―The Terrible Cost of Unforgiveness‖ by Larry Philip Nims, Ph.D. o Continued psychological pain. o Blocking of healthy communication o Similar offenses by others remind us of past. o Personal Power relinquished. o Added toxic negativity in other, present relationships. o Many, many more.
  19. 19. What is Forgiveness? • ―Forgiveness is an invitation to redeem failure‖ Doris Donnely, Learning to Forgive • ―National Treasure‖ [paraphrasing Thomas Edison, about invention of light bulb] I didn't fail, I found 2,000 ways how not to make a light bulb; I only need to find one way to make it work. • ―Forgiveness is most basically a release of our anger against someone unto God.‖ Dr. Charles Kraft, Fuller Theological Seminary, Anger and Forgiveness: Reflections in the Context of Inner Healing
  20. 20. What is Forgiveness? • ―Forgiveness is One‘s awareness of his/her need for restoration of self and relationships with others.‖* • Forgiveness is an emotional, cognitive, spiritual, behavioral change toward a perceived transgressor, where as the transgressor‘s debt has been cancelled by the victim, which may or may not lead to reconciliation.‖* * Patricia Jenkins, R.N., M.A
  21. 21. What is Forgiveness? • ―…a gift freely given in the face of a moral wrong, without denying the wrong itself.‖ • ―It is relinquishing of resentment… offering goodwill to the wrongdoer.‖* * Dr. Gayle L. Reed, from the University of Wisconsin in Educational Psychology
  22. 22. Forgiveness is a Spiritual Issue Forgiveness is a part of our world‘s spiritual belief system.
  23. 23. Buddhism • Forgiveness is a practice for removing unhealthy emotions that would otherwise cause harm to our mental well-being. • Hatred leaves a lasting effect on our karma (‖actions‖) and forgiveness creates emotions with a wholesome effect. • ―Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else but you are the one who gets burned‖ — The Buddha • You will not be punished for your anger, you will be punished by your anger.‖ — The Buddha
  24. 24. Judaism • Ideally a person who has caused harm, needs to sincerely apologize, then the wronged person is religiously bound to forgive. • However, even without an apology, forgiveness is considered a pious act (Deot 6:9). • Teshuva (, literally ―Returning‖) is a way of atoning, which requires cessation of the harmful act, regret over the act, confession and repentance. • Yom Kippur is the day of atonement when Jews particularly strive to perform teshuva.
  25. 25. Judaism (con‘t) • When asked by an offender for forgiveness, one should forgive with a sincere mind and a willing spirit.‖ — Mishneh Torah, Teshuvah 2:10 • ―Who takes vengeance or bears a grudge acts like one who, having cut one hand while handling a knife, avenges himself by stabbing the other hand.‖ — Jerusalem Talmud, Nedarim 9.4
  26. 26. Islam • The word Islam is derived from the Semitic word slm meaning ―peace‖ and forgiveness is a prerequisite for genuine peace. • The Quran makes some allowance for violence but only to defend faith, property or life. Still forgiveness is held as the better course of action whenever possible. • ―They avoid gross sins and vice, and when angered they forgive.‖ (Quran 42:37). • In terms of clemency, we find this passage: ―Although the just penalty for an injustice is an equivalent retribution, those who pardon and maintain righteousness are rewarded by God. He
  27. 27. Hinduism • The concept of performing atonement from one's wrongdoing (Prayaschitta — Sanskrit: Penance), and asking for forgiveness is very much a part of the practice of Hinduism. • Krishna said in the Gita that forgiveness is one of the characteristics of one born for a divine state • An unforgiving individual defiles himself with many enormities (immoral acts). • Righteousness is the one highest good; and forgiveness is the one supreme peace.
  28. 28. Christianity • In Christian teachings forgiveness of others plays an important role in spiritual life. • Forgiving others is essential to receiving forgiveness from God. • Forgiveness is equated to ―turning the other cheek‖ and loving them that mistreat you.
  29. 29. Christianity (con‘t) • A beautiful expression of forgiveness and understanding is St. Francis of Assisi‘s prayer: ―Oh Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console. To be understood as to understand. To be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive. It is in pardoning that we are pardoned. And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. ―
  30. 30. The exception…New Age! • God = You • It acknowledges many gods and goddesses. • The Earth is viewed as the source of all spirituality, and has its own intelligence, emotions and deity. • But superseding all is self. • Self is the originator, controller and God of all. • There is no reality outside of what the person determines.
  31. 31. The exception…New Age (con‘t) • Anything negative a person experiences (failures, sadness, anger, selfishness, hurt) is considered an illusion. • Believing themselves to be completely sovereign over their life, nothing about their life is wrong, negative or painful. • A person, becoming a god, creates their own reality. • So reality = no hurt + no need to forgive or be forgiven.
  32. 32. So… • We know what forgiveness is… • We understand it is a cornerstone of many world belief systems. • New Age belief says no need for forgiveness. • But it‘s not so much what forgiveness is that gets us stuck… • IT‘S WHAT FORGIVENESS IS NOT that hangs us up.
  33. 33. What Forgiveness is NOT! • According to Dr. David Seamands: o Overlooking the wrong that has been done. o Excusing or whitewashing the wrong that was done. o Explaining, psychologizing what the person has done. o Taking the blame for everything.
  34. 34. Forgiveness is no F.E.A.S.T.* • F = Forgiveness is not FORGETTING • E = Forgiveness is not EXPLAINING • A = Forgiveness is not AWAITING RESTITUTION • S = Forgiveness is not SMOTHERING • T = Forgiveness is not TRUSTING * Dr. Doug Little, Ph.D. 11/96
  35. 35. What Forgiveness is not! • Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖ • Myth #1: - Forgiving means the offender didn‘t really hurt you. ―Forgiveness is a redemptive response to having been wronged and wounded, [and] only those who have wronged and wounded us are candidates for forgiveness.‖ -Lewis B. Smedes
  36. 36. What Forgiveness is not! • Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖ • Myth #2: - Forgiving means you excuse the offender‘s hurtful act.
  37. 37. What Forgiveness is not! • Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖ • Myth #3 – Before forgiving, you must first understand why the offender hurt you.
  38. 38. Philip Yancey ―Not to forgive imprisons me in the past and locks out all potential for change. I thus yield control to another, my enemy, and doom myself to suffer the consequence of the wrong.‖
  39. 39. What Forgiveness is not! • Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖ • Myth #4 – Before forgiving the offender, you must feel forgiving. • It is a CHOICE!
  40. 40. What Forgiveness is not! • Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖ • Myth #5: - Forgiveness means the offender will face no consequences.
  41. 41. What Forgiveness is not! • Denise George in What Forgiveness Isn‘t says ―there are 6 myths that keep us from healing‖ • Myth #6: - When your offender is punished, you‘ll find closure. ―Forgiving is a journey, sometimes a long one‖ - Lewis B. Smedes
  42. 42. What keeps us from Forgiving? • Misconceptions of what forgiveness is not. • Revenge and hatred: o Blaming others for the hurt means there is no personal responsibility. o Blame others and we become object of sympathy and other the object of scorn. o Illusion of comfort.
  43. 43. What keeps us from Forgiving? • FEAR! o There may continued unwanted, irrational behavior against me. o It‘s permission and/or power to hurt us again. • Expectations. o I need others to behave the way I want. • Grudges o Simply a failure to accept that we too are a part of the situation. (Two people dancing)
  44. 44. What keeps us from Forgiving? • Excuses: o If I forgive then the wrongdoer escapes actions of restitution, which I need. o Feelings that if I forgive I am a coward. o Being labeled as weak, timid, stupid. • Too much pain that we do not want to.
  45. 45. Too much pain to forgive. • Fact is…until someone is forgiven, the pain and hurt continues because we have not released ourselves from the past. • ―Forgiveness is the only way to stop the pain.‖ - Neil Anderson, Victory Over the Darkness
  46. 46. What keeps us from Forgiving? • Thinking we have when we have not (bad fruit still exists). • Lessons of unforgiveness learned from key people in our lives.
  47. 47. What keeps us from Forgiving? • An Unforgiving personality o Traits of the unforgiving personality  A Negative, absent or under-developed view of the world.  Constant, unresolved hostility/anger.  Repetitive reliving (sharing) of the past offense.  In reliving the story, no forgiveness sharing.  Increased stress and diminished health affects.  Limited and diminishing social support.
  48. 48. What keeps us from Forgiving? • Lack of motivation • Moral Superiority o The issue is to big to forgive. o I am entitled to be forgiven. o I am entitled to have you forgive me. o I didn‘t do anything wrong. • A faulty belief system o Justice will not be served. • Loss of victim status • Others?
  49. 49. A Forgiving Personality • Positive Attitude/Thinking • Healthy Self-esteem • High feelings of self-worth • Quality social support • Spiritual well-being • Good communication skills • Good conflict resolution skills
  50. 50. A Forgiving Personality • Good sense of immediacy • Healthy assertiveness • Willingness to accept responsibility • Reliving life events are covered with GRACE.
  51. 51. Grace • The Greek word for grace is ―Caris.‖ • Means: ―non-meritorious or unearned favor, an unearned gift, freely given and never as merit for work performed.‖ • It‘s getting what one does not deserve. • (By the way – Mercy is not getting what you do deserve)
  52. 52. A Forgiving Personality • Good sense of immediacy • Healthy assertiveness • Willingness to accept responsibility • Reliving life events are covered with GRACE. • Ego-syntonic (behaviors, feelings, values, etc all in harmony)
  53. 53. The ―How to…‖ • EDUCATE YOUR CLIENT!!! On all the following! • First, recognize the human crisis o Am I willing to forgive? o Am I willing to be made willing to forgive? o Crisis = not easy nor an instantaneous event.
  54. 54. The ―How to…‖ • Second, understand the ―wills‖ of the crisis. o I ―will‖ forgive (An act of personal volition and obedience to God)
  55. 55. Colossians 3:13 (NIV) 13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
  56. 56. The ―How to…‖ • Second, understand the ―wills‖ of the crisis. o I ―will‖ forgive (An act of personal volition and obedience to God) o I ―will‖ not hold on to old feelings (An act of personal volition and surrender to God)
  57. 57. The ―How to…‖ • Second, understand the ―wills‖ of the crisis. o I ―will‖ forgive (An act of personal volition and obedience to God) o I ―will‖ not hold on to old feelings (An act of personal volition and surrender to God) o I ―will‖ receive new feelings (gift from God)
  58. 58. I ―will‖ receive new feelings! • Express new feelings regardless if you feel them or not. • Act on new feelings regardless if you feel them or not. • Do what you know is right instead of waiting on the feeling. • Feelings will come, through expression and action, and by snail mail.
  59. 59. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the process too! o The decision to forgive is the crisis point. o After the decision is made the process begins. o The decision to forgive may need to be re-visited over and over. o Each time the process begins again.
  60. 60. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 1: Hurt o Stage 2: Hate o Stage 3: Heal o Stage 4: Come Together
  61. 61. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 1: Hurt You‘ve been hurt and like most people, you might let this fester and grow until it stifles your joy. When that happens, you might want to celebrate for you have entered the first stage of forgiving.
  62. 62. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 1: Hurt Ask a simple, probing question: "Do I want to be healed, or do I want to go on suffering from an unfair hurt lodged in my memory? Process the event and feel the pain and other emotions.
  63. 63. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 2: Hate Hate is our natural response to any deep and unfair pain. It is our instinctive backlash against anyone who wounds us wrongly. Hate separates us from those we should belong to. It shoves them away from us.
  64. 64. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 2: Hate  There are two kinds of hate: passive and aggressive.  Passive hatred:  is that little bit of malice in us that robs us of energy to wish a person well.  You don't want them dead; you just hope they don't attain all that much success.  At the very least you don't want them to do as well as you.
  65. 65. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 2: Hate Aggressive hatred. This is much stronger than passive hatred. Here you may actually wish ill will on someone else.
  66. 66. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 2: Hate Passive or aggressive hatred; we do not allow ourselves to wish someone well, and we devoutly wish him or her ill. Don't confuse hatred and anger.
  67. 67. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 2: Hate Healthy anger can be a sign that we are alive, energize us to make things better. Hate does not want things changed for the better; hatred goal is to make things worse.
  68. 68. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 3: Heal o But how…
  69. 69. The depths of How to… • Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖ 1.Write the name of the offender & the offense. 2.Face the hurt and Hate – write down how you feel about the person & their wrong. 3.Face the cross – the cross of Christ makes forgiveness legally & morally right.
  70. 70. The depths of How to… • Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖ 1.Decide to bear the burden of each person‘s sin.
  71. 71. Galatians 6:1-2 1 Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted. 2Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
  72. 72. The depths of How to… • Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖ 1.Decide to bear the burden of each person‘s sin. 2.Decide to forgive (crisis, choice, freedom) 3.Take your list to God and Pray ―I forgive (name) for (list offenses).‖
  73. 73. The depths of How to… • Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖ 1.Destroy the list. You are now free. 2.Don‘t expect your decision to = major changes with the other person. 3.Try to understand the people you have forgiven. They are victims too.
  74. 74. The depths of How to… • Neil Anderson‘s ―Twelve Steps to Forgiveness‖ 1.Expect positive results. 2.Thank God for;  Lessons learned.  Maturity gained.  Decision made. 3.Be sure to accept your part of the blame.  Confess your failure to God and others.
  75. 75. Add.. ―commitment‖ • Help your client to decide/commit to… o Not seeking revenge. o Not dwelling on the offense. o Stop bring the offense up. o Be willing to receive new feelings toward the offender. o Cooperate with God
  76. 76. The depths of How to… • Help someone with forgiveness: The 4 phases of helping.
  77. 77. Uncovering Phase Outcome Decision Phase Phase Working Phase
  78. 78. Uncovering Phase • Processing the wrong doing. • Assisting the client in uncovering the emotional pain, anger, hurt, etc. • Validate their feelings. • Help identify the dysfunctional stuff; o Barriers to forgiveness, etc. • Education on Forgiveness.
  79. 79. Decision Phase • Explore the possible damage of unforgiveness. • Explore the possible positive outcomes of extending forgiveness. • More forgiveness education. • Assist the client in making a decision. • Go back to the Uncovering phase if necessary.
  80. 80. Work Phase • Grieve the pain of the injury. o Pain is the injury to self, betrayal, secondary losses, etc. • Reframe the wrongdoer. o The person is more than the wrong done. o Is a person of worthy. o Done without excusing the wrong • Develop action plan to offer goodwill to the wrongdoer.
  81. 81. Work Phase • Develop action plan to offer goodwill to the wrongdoer. o Acts of mercy, generosity, moral love, etc. o A plan that keeps the injured safe as to not allowing a second hurt. o Doable plan (i.e. say hello, wave, etc.) o Reminding to do and not wait on the feeling.
  82. 82. Outcome Phase • Help the client to realize the emotional relief of forgiving the offender. • Help the client to realize the personal growth of their decision to forgive. • Help the client to discover the paradox; as we give mercy, generosity; we feel changed and healed. • Help client explore ways they can help others.
  83. 83. Forgiving those who are not with us. • We can forgive those not with us (dead). • Help the client understand that forgiveness doesn‘t not require personal reconciliation. • Use imagery to confront the deceased. • In imagery, switch roles. • Focus on what forgiveness can do for the client. • We are still required to release them and to forgive them.
  84. 84. Forgiving ourselves • More difficult due to shame and self- hatred. • Again, as counselors, emphasize the ―will‖ needed to forgive ourselves. • The roots of unforgiving ourselves usually being in childhood o ―If I were good enough…daddy would come home.‖ o ―It‘s my fault this happened!‖
  85. 85. Forgiving ourselves • Perhaps the root is in unfinished business with someone who has died. o May need to confess it first. o Then understand God‘s forgiveness for it. o Help foster the understanding that Jesus forgive and expects the same of us, even ourselves.
  86. 86. Forgiving ourselves • Dr. Seamands suggests these questions: o ―Will you right now ask God to give you the grace to forgive yourself?‖ o ―Will you abandon your strange desire to have higher standards than God?‖ o ―Will you give up your right to condemn yourself?‖ o ―Will you ask God for the grace to never again remind Him of things He says He doesn‘t remember?‖
  87. 87. Forgiving ourselves • Points to keep in mind: o No one‘s perfect…not even you. o Everyone has regrets. o Your mistake/wrongdoing has been done before, thousands of times, but countless others. o You‘ve created nothing new. o I‘m human…I fail.
  88. 88. Forgiving ourselves (con‘t) • Points to keep in mind: o Habitually blaming yourself means you‘re stuck in the past. o Make amends with yourself and others. o Be kind to yourself.
  89. 89. Forgiving God • Strange? – He didn‘t do nor would He ever do anything to wrong or hurt you. • Inadvertently we probably have blamed him for: o Hurting us! o Abandoning us! • Neglected us! • We may even be angry at God.
  90. 90. Forgiving God • When or if those things are experienced, admitting it is difficult to near impossible for some. • In their book ―Healing the Inner Spirit‖, John and Paula Sanford say; ―…it‘s not a lack of faith to think such thoughts or a sin to be angry at God…feeling angry itself is sin.‖
  91. 91. Forgiving God • The sin is not to feel it…it‘s what we do with the anger that makes it sin or not. • Our anger says some things, it says… 1.We believe in God. 2.We expect him to be there for us. 3.At least for the moment, we love Him.
  92. 92. Facilitate this anger with God • By… o Communicating that God can take it. o Allowing your client to express it.  The ―Imprecatory Psalm‖ Exercise. o Since God hasn‘t really done anything wrong, what does forgiving God mean?  Releasing the anger, bitterness & resentment  Look at Job 42:2-6
  93. 93. Job 42:2-6 2 "I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted. 3 You asked, Who is this that obscures my counsel without knowledge?‗ Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know. 4 "You said, 'Listen now, and I will speak; I will question you, and you shall answer me.‗ 5 My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. 6 Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.‖
  94. 94. What about getting Forgiveness? • Let‘s examine ―The Prodigal Son‖ • The Story (Luke 15:10-32) • The steps to obtaining forgiveness for ourselves.
  95. 95. Steps • Step 1: Have a purpose.
  96. 96. Luke 15 17 "When he came to his senses, he said, 'How many of my father's hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back…
  97. 97. Steps • Step 1: Have a purpose. • Step 2: Make a plan.
  98. 98. Luke 15 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.' 20 So he got up and went to his father.
  99. 99. Steps • Step 1: Have a purpose. • Step 2: Make a plan. • Step 3: Confess.
  100. 100. Luke 15 21 "The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.
  101. 101. Steps • Step 1: Have a purpose. • Step 2: Make a plan. • Step 3: Confess. • Step 4: Accept Responsibility. • Step 5: Acknowledge the wrong.
  102. 102. Luke 15 21 "The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.
  103. 103. Steps • Step 1: Have a purpose. • Step 2: Make a plan. • Step 3: Confess. • Step 4: Accept Responsibility. • Step 5: Acknowledge the wrong. • Step 6: Make Restitution.
  104. 104. In getting forgiveness keep in mind… • Don‘t expect or demand a certain response. • Find the right time and place (God‘s timing). • Completeness o Don‘t say ―If I hurt you…‖ says ―I have…‖ • Restraint o Don‘t preach or go overboard and blow it.
  105. 105. Forgiveness Tools • Journaling. • Forgiveness Imagery. • Sharing our FORGIVENES Story. • Ritualize your forgiveness. • Read, tell or share forgiveness stories. (LOOK EVERYWHERE FOR STORIES)
  106. 106. Video Clips • 4 Clips of ―Spiderman 3‖ o Clip 1: The wrong by ―Sandman‖ o Clip 2: Spiderman forgives ―Sandman‖ o Clip 3: The perceived wrong of ―Spiderman‖ o Clip 4: Harry forgives ―Spiderman‖ • What‘s You Story? – Brief Sharing!
  107. 107. More Forgiveness Tools • Reward yourself for forgiveness. • Change the channel. • Express your self. • Act on your forgiveness. • Others? – Share what‘s worked for you!
  108. 108. The ―How to…‖ • Third, know the Stages of Forgiveness! o Stage 4: Come Together o If you can…
  109. 109. Romans 12:18 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
  110. 110. Reconciliation? • Come together if you can, but remember: o Forgiveness is one person. o Forgiveness ≠ reconciliation. o Reconciliation requires two people.
  111. 111. Reconciliation? • Come together if you can, but remember: o Both persons have to be fully invested in reconciliation. o Forgiveness means changing your thinking about the offender o Reconciliation means a change in behavior by the offender.
  112. 112. Last Thought! • A report from the University of Miami and Hope College reminds us of the following: 1.Forgiveness is associated with emotional stability, agreeableness, a focus on others and religious commitment. 2.It is aided by apology, restitution, sincere remorse. 3.It can be facilitated 4.Forgiveness is difficult.
  113. 113. Questions/Comments?
  114. 114. Thank You!
  1. A particular slide catching your eye?

    Clipping is a handy way to collect important slides you want to go back to later.

×