Have you ever tried to apologize and the person would not hear it? Or maybe they acted like they forgave you and then talked about you behind your back?
Over the past few years these scenarios have been harder for me. As I move closer and closer to an attitude of forgiveness, I struggle to leave those alone who do not seek the same attitude. I want to infect them with the same peace and serenity which has overtaken me. I have to force myself to allow them their own space and time as they struggle with their own hurt.
A cycle of unforgiveness can begin if you try to apologize, the person refuses your apology, and then you retrack your apology because of rejection from the other person. This scenario can create a perpetual self-feeding ball of resentment. To overcome this problem, we need to remember that forgiveness is not about the other person. If we are sorry but the other person will not receive our apology, then the focus still needs to remain on avoiding resentment. Resenting someone for not accepting your apology places you in the same boat of hurt and pain.
Forgiveness cannot be forced on anyone. All we can do is focus on our own thoughts, emotions, and actions. Our response, both physical and verbal, to someone else’s hurt is what we control. Be ready for rejection so that it does not change the forgiveness in your heart.
Question: Is your apology conditional?