Litany for Forgiving Others

God, it is our nature to keep record of wrongs (1).
It is your nature to forgive (2,5).
We tend to let wounds fester.
You offer light, air, and healing.
We tend to get stuck in bitterness and pain.
You embody freedom.

Come now, into the places where our hearts have been wounded
Where we have been betrayed or abandoned
    Or disrespected
    Or overlooked
    Or kicked while we’re down
    Or stolen from
    Or slandered
    Or misunderstood.
Come now, into the dark parts of us that want revenge
    That want to grind axes,
    That want our enemies to suffer
    That want to keep a list of grievances
    That want to prove how strong we are
    That want to defend ourselves.
Replace our pride and bitterness
With superhuman love.

This is hard work for us:
Becoming like you
Turning the other cheek
Making ourselves vulnerable (3).
It’s why we need you so much -
Because we are weak.
We need you to move mountains for us:
Mountains of pain and resentment.

Strength, wholeness, and redemption
Life, peace, and resurrection
Are in forgiveness;
And in forgiving, we are forgiven (4).


(1) 1 Cor 13:5
(2) Ps 103:10-14
(3) Matt 5:39
(4) Matt 6:14-15
(5) Ps 130:3,4