Issues of Life

Reader Questions: If I avoid him, does that mean I haven’t forgiven him?


Dear Ufuomaee,

Good morning ma, hope you’re good. Please I would like to ask you a question. I met a guy during my service year who I was just plainly friends with. Along the line, I discovered I had developed feelings for him. Somewhere along sha, I told him about it and he constantly encouraged me to express those feelings while unknown to me, he didn’t appreciate it nor feel the same way. Gradually I started feeling like even just as friends, I felt like I was forcing the friendship or being used. So I decided to clarify the issue especially the feeling part, I did and then he told me he didn’t feel the same way and he made me to constantly express my feelings so that I will get over it and dt he needed friends which is why he didn’t want to lose me. I felt insulted and all but really wasn’t dt mad at him. But I decided that to regain myself and move on, I should stay away from him, so I deleted his contact and avoided contacts with him. But recently I have been feeling like it’s because I haven’t forgiven him that I avoid him. I still have feelings for though. Please I need your advice. Thanks in anticipation.

Dear Reader,

Thanks for reaching out to me. Forgiveness can be tough, because even after your forgive someone, it may not be wise to keep them as a friend, because of the broken trust. Forgiveness doesn’t always restore a relationship, because the other party also needs to be willing to change and be reconciled. An example is God’s forgiveness, which He has prepared for ALL mankind. But He is not reconciled with all, because not all have accepted it. And until they do, there is a need for a separation. It doesn’t mean that they are not forgiven.

However, in your case, as we are human, we can still habour bitterness in our hearts towards someone, or the old feelings of hurt may resurface, even after we have made a decision to forgive them, freeing them and ourselves. To help you forgive completely, pray for this brother. As often as he comes to mind, pray for him. This is not a prayer of forgiveness where you reharsh all he did wrong. Rather, commit him to God. Ask that God’s will will be done in his life. Ask that God may be merciful and favourable to him and keep him in all his ways. If he isn’t saved, pray that he may come to know God and be delivered from the power of sin.

As you pray for him, bitterness cannot reside in you. You will soon come to see him through God’s eyes. And soon, every bad feeling will go. You may even forget that he was such a terrible person to you, as you understand his humanity and his weakness.

When you have prayed for him, pray for yourself too. Likewise, commit yourself to God, that you will always be found in His will. Ask for His mercy and favour in your life. Ask to know Him more, and grow into His image more and more. You may also pray for Him to reserve for you a special man, after His own heart. Pray that you will not miss him, because you are out of God’s will. Pray that you will know him, when you meet him, just as you know the Lord!

This is the man who your heart will begin to long for…a man after God’s heart. Reserved for you. You do not yet know him, but you believe by faith that he exists, or that God will bring him to being, in answer to your prayer. But you will only find him by walking in God’s will, so you need to continue in that.

With these prayers said, you have blessed yourself, and refocused your eyes on God. For it is only in God that you will find this special man. Don’t try to look for him with your natural eyes, because you will miss him. You will also be free of your attachment to this other man who was all wrong for you! And you have set him free and blessed him too.

Practically, I think you can be friends with him again, and open yourself up to reconciliation. Just remember that your gaze is not on him, but on God. If he will not walk with God, you cannot walk with him. It doesn’t mean that you haven’t forgiven him. It just means that you know where you are going, and he is not your leader, nor is he the way!

I hope this helps you to move on, and continue to walk with God.

Sincerely, Ufuoma.

Photo credit: http://www.meldmagazine.com.au

Got questions?  Email me@ufuomaee.com

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