Episode 66 Forgiveness
Welcome to the podcast Loving on purpose. I'm your host, Bonine Lyman. If you're having trouble navigating through your relationships with your adult Children, if you are struggling to connect with them or having specific challenges, you're in the right place. You're listening to Bonnie Lyman. This is episode 66. Forgiveness.
Hello, my friends. Welcome back another week. Wow. Time really flies when you get old. That's all I can say. I can't believe that it's gonna be Thursday tomorrow already. And that March just kind of flew by. my thoughts go out to you that live in Utah with all the snow that you've had. I heard that's quite a bit of snow. But the ski resort guys are happy. That's all I can say about that.
So we're moving on into spring. The days are getting longer and I welcome the light that comes this time of year is that time of year. When in my life, I recognize I give a little more attention and thought to the teachings of Jesus Christ. I try to make it an everyday part of my life. I even try to incorporate it into my coaching, that my coaching is, is based on, if we will follow his teachings, then we live a happier, peaceful life. And so I believe that where I come into that is, I feel the answers to all our problems are in the gospel of Jesus Christ. But it's often that we don't know how to apply these teachings. And that's where I kind of come in.
I want you to know that my belief in Jesus affects my whole life. But I also, and civil enough to respect that. There are those, even some of my listeners that don't believe in Jesus Christ. I have some good Jewish friends that respond frequently to my emails and I have met with them and talked to them with their struggles with their adult daughter. And we're, we're more alike than we are different. We all seek after good things. We all are trying to find peace and harmony in our lives with our adult Children, with our families, with our spouses, with everybody and maybe our faiths aren't the same. But I, I like studying the Stoics. I like studying Buddhism.
I like hearing what Judaism has to offer in Catholicism. And I think all of these religions offer a, a good base for getting guidance in this life, which in this crazy world, I think we need some source to turn to. So some of you may not want to listen to this and that's ok because a lot of it has to do with my feelings of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice that we tend to give a special recognition to at this time of year of a power that it gives to us to have good feelings and to come about those good feelings when it may be difficult circumstances that are causing us to feel otherwise, I think all good things come from God. And if I die and find out that there is no God that there is no Jesus Christ, which in my heart, I don't believe that's going to happen, but I can't prove it's true.
My beliefs has, has provided me with thoughts and guidance for a very happy life and I will have no regrets over my choice to follow and to try to emulate the teachings and the character of Jesus Christ. Now, even though I feel like I've had a basic life, it has not been free from trials or oppositions or challenges, but I have been able to get through it from the support and the guidance that I get from having an understanding of what this life is all about and that it's necessary to have this opposition in our life so that we essentially are not robots that we can feel the good and the good feels even better. When there have been difficult things we have gotten through. I believe Jesus Christ sacrificed his comfort, his life by somehow suffering for not only the mistakes I have made, but everybody has made in this world. But he has also felt all the sadness and the sickness and all the sorrows that all of us have felt in some way.
And at some time or another in our life, when I speak of love, always winning. He was a supreme example. He could only go through this painful experience in the Garden of Yosemite because of his love for us and through his suffering for all our mistakes, because no imperfect thing can enter into the presence of Heavenly Father that justice had to be met. And so he took the hit, so to speak. He took the consequences for all of our shortcomings and that by believing in him and trying to do what he taught us by just trying to be a good person. I feel I am empowered with the ability to love others that are difficult to love and to forgive others that don't deserve to be forgiven. This gift. This power is given to all whether we believe in him or not.
I don't feel without a higher sources intervention that we could ever possibly love people that were unkind and disrespectful and offensive to us and that we could never forgive people that don't deserve to be forgiven, maybe especially like a drunk driver that has killed one of our Children in a car accident. I believe it's only from a higher source that some power we have the capacity and the capability. But without this help, we just couldn't get to the place where we could find peace and love and non judgment and forgiveness toward others in our life. So it's forgiveness that I want to address today. And I'm going to give you five steps on how to go through this process, to forgive others, especially those that maybe don't deserve to be forgiven. We all know that forgiving another person that we are really the beneficiary of that they can't really feel, I mean, even when we tell them, we forgive them, they may not believe us or it doesn't necessarily change their feelings because we know that we don't have control over making anybody feel a certain way. But the benefit is to us, the judging, the condemning, the accusing, hating others for wrongful acts toward us feels horrible, but forgiving feels amazing. Forgiving sets us up to be free from carrying unnecessary burdens. David E Sorensen who is a leader in my church said, when we forgive no longer does someone else's wrong doing control our course.
When we forgive others, it frees us to choose how we will live our lives. When we don't forgive others, it's like a, a noose around our neck. It's like carrying a back full of rocks. It just weighs us down and it keeps us from living the life that we want to live. Another leader in our church who has since passed away, James E Faus. He said, if we can find forgiveness in our hearts, for those who have caused us hurt and injury, we will rise to a higher level of self seem and well being.
Some recent studies show that people who are taught to forgive, become less angry, more hopeful, less depressed, less anxious and less stressed, which leads to a greater physical well-being. Another of these study concludes, he says that forgiveness is a liberating gift that we give ourselves. And I really believe that with all my heart, but I think those of you that are at least members of my faith belong to my church, the church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints. We, we have been taught this often that it by not forgiving somebody, it is more painful and more detrimental to us. Then if we can learn how to forgive others and move on.
The definition of forgiveness is essentially the act of pardoning someone who is wronged or offended us. In the Bible, the Greek word translated forgiveness literally means to let go. So we're letting go of those, those thoughts and it's a process and we'll get into that in just a little bit here. CS Lewis observed that we all find forgiveness to be a lovely idea right up until we have to forgive someone. And it's true. I kind of say we don't really have a strong belief or a testimony in something until we are tested when we have to exercise and act on that belief. So I am going to give you five steps to help you, get you on your way to forgiving someone. I know that there's a lot of you out there that have been very hurt by your adult Children.
I made a podcast on when your Children divorce you or maybe it was when Children divorced their parents and it talks about there are many times when our adult Children request no contact with us or their Children and they enforce it and there can be some pretty painful things. There can be some really painful thoughts, judgmental thoughts that cause us a lot of pain. And so I don't take this lightly that, that there's not reason to be hurt or that it's not difficult to do. But hopefully, what I share with you will help you. My heart goes out to you, but I do believe there is a way out of the pain. And like I said earlier, that way out is from following the teachings of Jesus Christ who has asked us to forgive everyone. And I don't think he's asked us that just to show love and respect for him, but it's totally for our benefit.
So the first step is to be aware of your thoughts or more. So just acknowledge that your hurt, your pain. It's not coming from the actions of other people, but it's coming from your thoughts. So just recognizing that is a big step in being able to forgive another person because we can't wait for an apology from them or expect a change in behavior. I mean, we can hope for it. But if, if we want to be able to get rid of this hurt, we are gonna have to take responsibility for that. So number one, just remember all of our feelings come from our thoughts, not from the happenings, not from the circumstances, not from what people say or do so, number two then becomes you acknowledge your pain, you own it, you feel it, you sit with it a bit, just acknowledge that you are hurting. A acknowledge that you don't like what was said or done resisting anything intensifies it, trying to deny that. Well, I shouldn't have been offended is not going to help, just own it and then just be willing to feel that discomfort for a while. And I promise you that if you will just feel those feelings you're feeling inside your body, get out of your head, get away from those thoughts don't ruminate, but just feel that hurt inside for a while that it will lessen and it will fade.
So it's number three is almost like number two, but it's recognizing all the emotions. Maybe there's sadness, maybe there's also anger, maybe there's disappointment, there's offense and feel each one and don't be too he's in, in escaping feeling those feelings. You've got to feel the feeling, that's the only way that it will subside and lessen the intensity of it.
Number four then is try to imagine being in their shoes if I thought, like, I, they thought what would I be doing now? I, I think often in the case there's extremes of offenses of, reasons to forgive another person. I think of the drunk driver that, you know, causes an accident where somebody dies. I think they're feeling pretty bad, they're feeling the pain, they're feeling their remorse. But if I think sometimes back on just other people in particular, maybe our adult Children and some of the things they say to us or some of the things they don't say or don't do for us that we, we can get in situations that we are hurting and we, we find it hard to forgive them for their actions. A lot of my clients, they are heartbroken when their Children are not treating them with love and respect. But I think we have to realize that and I'm not trying to make excuses for them or apologize or to say their behavior is ok. But things are so different at this time in their life than they were at our age.
And when we were in that place in life, family structures are different dynamics in families are different roles of men and women are different. And this, this family structure is, is not the same at all. Especially in the United States culture as it was one or two generations ago. And so what we see is disrespect. They may, our adult Children may see it as exercising their independence. They don't necessarily see themselves as doing anything wrong. They are struggling with issues that we never had to struggle with before. And I'm not saying that they're offensive behavior or their behavior, whatever you want to label it is acceptable, but judging them does not change their behavior and it doesn't make us feel any better. So when we put ourselves in their shoes and why they may be doing this, what is influencing what kind of stresses we shift our focus, we change our mindset. And then if we change our thoughts, we have a different feeling. Michael Wilcox had a great example to share about forgiving his father, Michael Wilcox. I consider a pretty spiritual man. And In, a talk he gave in education week in, I think it was 2005. He talked about his father abandoned his family when he was a very young boy.
And there were several Children in the family left than to his single mother. I think she never remarried and she managed, but it was a struggle and he never for forgave or he had a hard time forgiving his dad for what he had done to him and also his mom and his whole family. And he, he asked for help and he tried all sorts of things and it just wasn't coming to him. But there was a time He was playing with his two sons and his heart was full of love and gratitude for this opportunity. And he was touched that it was not him and his mother that were experiencing the most pain. It was his father that missed out on this wonderful opportunity to raise this family. And it was only when he had those change of thoughts, that change of mindset, he changed his perspective of what happened that he was able to forgive his dad. So number four is imagine being in their shoes and what they're missing out on. But then it's also we need to let it go and we do that by hanging on to new thoughts. And I'll throw a couple of those out in a moment. We decide intentionally that we are not going to focus on the offense, but we are going to learn from it and we are going to move on.
I believe this is only possible to think new thoughts when we are feeling so hurt to come up with these new thoughts is only possible with help from a higher source. And so we ask God for help to bless us to help us tap into that power that comes from the atonement of Jesus Christ. And that power comes to us by the holy ghost, putting forgiving thoughts into our minds. Now, this is where I feel I have been able to help women, but I still believe that it was help from God to seek help on getting some extra help from an outside source to be able to let this go. I really believe that every client I have had just didn't happen by accident, but it happened by an answer to a prayer or it was meant to be that I was put in their path that I may help them. And so whether it be a podcast, whether it be on my email list, tips I give you or if you work with me one on one, my true desire is to help you move out of pain that you can live a satisfying life and get rid of that burden of, of not forgiving your adult Children for the way they treat you.
My daughter Jody gave a great example of letting it go. We need to get to some point where we lay down that pack of rocks and we recognize that carrying them around, carrying those thoughts that are causing us to feel judgment toward our kids is not helping us. So she was on an escalator and she had one of those carry-on suitcases with, you know, wheels on them and she was dragging it behind her. And then she got to the bottom of the escalator. She lost her balance and she fell and as she fell, she hung on to her suitcase and So she, she couldn't get up. She was struggling and it wasn't till she let go of that suitcase that she was able to push herself up and without any harm and then just grab her suitcase and move on. But she said that was a real lesson to her in letting things go. If she had let go of that suitcase, right. When she had fallen, she could have easily gotten back up on her feet much easier. So holding on to those grudges and that hurt feeling when we probably truly have been yeah, offended when these people probably don't deserve to be forgiven. But to let it go and to seek guidance from our heavenly father and maybe an outs outside source is a way to move on with our life. We can't control anyone else but we can influence them with love and forgiveness knowing that somebody hasn't given up on them just might be the impetus for them to want to change their behavior.
The hardest of days for Jesus Christ was his life. It started on Palm Sunday when he entered into Jerusalem. Jesus Christ knew that this was the beginning of his true mission of coming to earth and that it wasn't going to be the most pleasant experience he had had and his hardest of days he did it alone. He none were with him to support him. He was killed because he was a good man that had more power over the people than what the Roman leaders were comfortable with. And that power he had over people was that he loved them, he forgave them. He was sad when they were sad and he knew how to comfort those that were in pain. And as he was dying a slow, miserable and death and yes, it was, he had the power to give up his life much sooner. But it was only from promptings from God that he knew when his complete mission had been accomplished, that he did that. But his last words were God, forgive them, father, forgive them for, they know not what they do. Learning to forgive those, especially the ones that don't deserve to be forgiven is the key that will guarantee us of living the most peaceful life we are able to live. I hope that your hearts will be soft that you will not only forgive others, but you will also forgive yourself.
Have a good week and I'll talk to you next week if you like this, be this episode and you felt it was of benefit to you. I ask you to share it with somebody that perhaps it could also benefit. But if you're still feeling kind of stuck in that, you don't know how to apply what was talked about or where to start on, on changing your thoughts, on changing your perspective on bettering your relationship. Get on a call with me and we can have a discussion and I can tell you how to apply it and where we start and then you get to decide what you want to do about this relationship that maybe you're struggling with, with your adult Children. There is no reason to go on the rest of our lives struggling with our relationships with our adult Children. Let's assume the best. Let's assume that we all love each other and we're just trying to figure out how to maintain our own boundaries and respect another ones, but I can help you with everything. So just go to Bonnie Lyman dot com and book a call. I can't wait to hear from you.