Saturday, March 13, 2010

Free Yourself to Love by Jackie Kendall

The Liberating Power of Forgiveness

Jackie Kendall's childhood was a horror story of abuse. A counselor deemed her family "one of the top-ten most dysfunctional in America." Family members have dealt with this trauma in different ways: Two siblings committed suicide. Some siblings ran wild.

When Jackie decided that she wanted to break the mold and be a healthy, loving woman, to forgive or not to forgive was not a question. Simply put: one can't love freely without the developed skill of forgiving freely. In this volume, Jackie shares her own story and struggle to learn this vital life skill. She also reveals the reasons for--and results of--refusing to forgive. In passionate, empathetic prose, Jackie urges her readers to exchange free-floating bitterness for the freedom to love and be loved.

My Review:
This primer on forgiveness gives an in-depth insight on how to do the job. The author breaks down the ability to forgive as per the biblical command to forgive 7 times 70.

She lists the six most commonly used excuses for not forgiving:

1. The offense was too great.
2. The memories of the offense are so vivid.
3. The offense was repeated.
4. You want to make the person pay for the offense.
5. You are too angry to even consider forgiving this person.
6. The offender didn't say, "I am sorry."

Addressing each excuse, the author points out that forgiving is a gift, a choice that we must make to experience the freedom to love. She also points out that reconciliation does not necessarily go hand-in-hand with forgiveness. A list follows each chapter that help "Make It Personal." I feel that most folks will find this book helpful.

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