Greg and I recently had a disagreement where something from the past was brought up, and it has me thinking about forgiveness and letting go of offenses in marriage.
Are you hanging on to a past hurt and carrying it around with you?
It is very easy to keep our offenses packed up in a neat little suitcase and carry them around with us, they are useful, they can be unpacked to make a point in the future during an argument with our spouse. This is unfortunately what we do as people and seeing in writing makes it seem pretty childish and it makes sense that it would only perpetuate an argument forward. Even though it looks silly in writing, a lot of us keep this arsenal for just the right time when we may need ammunition.
Why do we keep our past hurts and carry them around with us?
I am guilty of carrying around past hurts and pulling them out as ammunition in an argument. Through some conversations with Greg, I have discovered that I carry around offenses that weren’t resolved for me. Apologies are an important thing and we have learned that we both desire a different kind of apology so it is pretty easy to miss the mark with each other. Find out more about your apology language here.
Hanging onto the past makes it very difficult to move forward with your spouse.
When we cling to the past we make it challenging for our spouses to change. If we determine to focus on a behavior of the past and always assume our spouse will revert to an action, it makes it very hard for them to change. We keep them locked into the very behavior we are holding offense with them about. We want growth out of our spouses and ourselves for our marriage, so we must leave room for this change in order to receive it.
Letting go of past offense can be very difficult, but finding a way is just as freeing for you as it is for your spouse.
No one likes to live in confinement; we would like freedom and space to live our lives peacefully. When we hang on to past behavior and offenses we confine our spouses, ourselves, and our marriages. We put a box around what is possible and leave little room for movement. Sometimes offenses need to be addressed and healed with your spouse, but a lot of them we need to just let go and give them up to God for our success in our marriages.
Forgiveness and letting things go can be difficult, but who wants to lug all that baggage around?