"Who Heals Our Wounds?"

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This is an excerpt froma Extending Forgiveness , by Virginia H. Pearce.

Forgiveness isn’t just between two people. First and foremost, it’s between you and the Lord. Why would that be? Think about it. Think about the fact that the Savior came to earth in order to forgive everyone’s sins. When He did that, He paid for the sins of the people who have hurt us, didn’t He? So our holding out against those people and trying to punish them is really taking upon ourselves something that isn’t our job. We don’t have the right to revenge. We don’t have the right to hold that person’s feet to the fire. That judgment belongs to the Savior because of what He did for all of us. That is part of His mission.

Consider the fact that the person we have really offended when we can’t extend forgiveness to those who have wounded us is the Lord. That’s the relationship that is ruptured, and it’s a far greater sin to separate ourselves from the Lord than it is to rupture the relationship between two human beings.

We are mortals. And, as such, we make mistakes. Nobody goes through life without inflicting some damage unintentionally on other people. And the closer those people are to us, the more possibility of damage. I could probably make a list of how I have hurt each of my children, for example. And I’m certain my children could make their own lists of how they have been damaged by me, and those lists probably wouldn’t even match!

We all create pain for others, however unintentional it might be. When a new baby is placed in our arms, we vow to love, nurture, and protect that child. But, sadly, we are all mortal beings, and very often the greatest wounds we inflict are those we have no idea that we are inflicting. So each of us needs to learn how to seek and how to extend forgiveness.

Speaking of the wounds, who heals our wounds? Is it the people we’ve had the conflicts with? Although it’s nice if they say they are sorry and want to make it up to us, they can’t really heal our wounds, can they? That’s also the Savior’s job—to bind up our wounds. He does the forgiving, and He does the binding up. So once again, we see that the whole struggle to extend forgiveness is really between us and the Lord.

(Virginia H. Pearce, Extending Forgiveness [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2013], 9–12).

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