Forgive – 3/3/12

Matthew 6: 15
But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

A number of years ago, between high school and college, I was a counselor at a week long camp for “pre-delinquent” kids. Kids already getting in some trouble, referred to the camp by a social worker working with the family. Our goal was to let to each one experience that loving one another wasn’t really such a bad thing.  On a backpack overnight in the Washington Cascades, someone had thrown someone else’s backpack in the river. As the counselors gathered to talk about what to do, the first concern was to give the one responsible an experience of confession and forgiveness, lest they carry this action back home with them, with no resolution, to add to a growing pile of trouble not being dealt with.

is given
as much
to the forgiver
as to the one forgiven

this letting go
of a wrong suffered
is perhaps
the most healing thing
one can do

it sets right
so many relationships
removing revenge
opening up a closed heart
washing clean
a past wound

to let healing
to let healing

to forgive
is to set one free
and be freed yourself

or not
is to imprison another
with your arms
wrapped tightly
around the object
of your despite


About Clark W Johnson

I am a poet, interested in using poetry to explore my interactions with the spiritual. I find poetry captures tension, paradox and flow well enough so I can hold experiences at arms length and reflect on them from multiple vantage points. As I walk deeper with my God, I'm finding such a record invaluable for myself, and I find that pieces and parts touch others as well. I love and long for more points of contact along those lines.
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