When you forgive someone who wronged you, you aren’t just helping them—you’re also healing yourself.
We have all had moments when we have felt wronged and the person who wronged us hasn’t appeared apologetic in the slightest. Whether it was a small incident, like someone cutting you off while you were driving, or something much bigger and more personal, it can be frustrating and sometimes even devastating. You may find it difficult to forgive them—at least at the time.
In her talk “Beauty for Ashes: The Healing Path of Forgiveness,” Sister Kristin M. Yee teaches us about forgiveness as she focuses on the Old Testament story of Abigail and David. David’s men needed supplies, but a wealthy man named Nabal refused to help. Angered, David was planning to kill Nabal, but Abigail, Nabal’s wife, came forward with supplies and asked for forgiveness for her husband. Sister Lee says, “In this account, Abigail can be seen as a powerful type or symbol of Jesus Christ. Through His atoning sacrifice, He can release us from the sin and weight of a warring heart and provide us with the sustenance we need.”
Not only does forgiveness benefit the person you forgive, it also benefits you. When you forgive someone, you are able to heal and find peace, because you aren’t carrying the weight of their actions anymore—and you become more Christlike in the process. It’s not easy, and it can often take more effort on your part than you may be comfortable with, but because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, He takes upon Himself the burdens—yours and those of the person who hurt you. Sister Yee quotes President Russell M. Nelson in saying, “It is usually easy to forgive one who sincerely and humbly seeks your forgiveness. But the Savior will grant you the ability to forgive anyone who has mistreated you in any way. Then their hurtful acts can no longer canker your soul.”
Forgiveness is often difficult, but it is also one of the most beautiful things that we have the ability to do while on this earth.
Read Sister Kristin M. Yee’s full talk here
To learn more about forgiveness, read this talk by President Hinckley, or this article by Eli Gibbons.
—Cecilia Oaks, Latter-day Saint Insights
FEATURE IMAGE BY OC GONZALEZ