The Oprah Winfrey Show wasn’t appointment television for me. I watched the show from time to time. Usually I would tune in when she had a celebrity that I liked as a guest. Occasionally I would watch her self-help/motivation shows. One day I turned on TV and got sucked into one of those shows. Little did I know that it would change the course of my life. I don’t remember the name of the female guest. I just remember ONE sentence that came out of her mouth! It’s a sentence that changed my adult life!
“The Definition of Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could be any different.”
Those words brought clarity to my personal life! I invite you to read that sentence again. I encourage you to read the sentence again, but slowly this time. That sentence is SO true! When the guest uttered that sentence, I felt the angels descend down from the heavens. I saw multiple rainbows in the sky. It gave me a huge epiphany about certain relationships in my life.
Like many of us, I had residual pain from my upbringing with certain people in my life. I had a hard time letting go of the hurt. I also had relationships with certain people that we would come together, fight, separate, come together, fight, separate. I was tired of the cycle. I always walked away disappointed. When I heard that sentence, it helps me find the path to break the cycle. I now had a way to end the hurt and disappointments. I began to accept those people for who they are NOW. The healing began that day. It became so relatable to me. It made sense.
The PAST cannot be changed! What’s done is done! No matter what THAT person who “caused” the problem says to you NOW, the past will still be the same. For me, I found the courage to forgive people regardless of my current relationship with them; no matter if they admitted wrong doing or not. Forgiving them made me feel lighter and free. I stopped bringing up the past in arguments. I learned how to argue about the subject at hand. I know that sounds funny but it was true the first couple of years after this. Since then I have learned how NOT to argue. Instead I DISCUSS issues. And it can all be traced back to the sentence, “The definition of forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could be any different.”