When my twin brother died, six months later my father left. There were some very challenging reasons for which he chose to no longer be a part of our lives. What I know know is that we need to give an incredible amount of energy to how we forgive. I saw him only twice before he died 16 years later, and one of those times he knew I was there and did not come talk to me. The second time we spent a few days getting to know each other. I am grateful for the time we spent together before he died.
Forgiving God, help us to learn how to forgive others. May we learn that releasing the pain we feel when betrayed by people we trust is a sign of our own strength. Let us recognize that we do not need the other person to repent for us to move on from the anger and hurt we feel from what was done to us. May we know that in being forgiving, it makes it easier for us to ask forgiveness when we have hurt those we love. Give us the wherewithal to repent when we hurt others, and seek to rebuild the trust we have broken. Let us love each other so much that we are willing to try again to have the relationship with those with whom we have tension now. Let us live into what it is to the forgiveness described in the Lord’s Prayer. Amen.