Posted by: pastordarren | December 31, 2010

Letting Go of Past Hurts and Working Toward Reconciliation

Below is an entry from Henri J.M. Nouwen’s Bread for the Journey.

Letting Go of Old Hurts

One of the hardest things in life is to let go of old hurts. We often say, or at least think: “What you did to me and my family, my ancestors, or my friends I cannot forget or forgive. … One day you will have to pay for it.” Sometimes our memories are decades, even centuries, old and keep asking for revenge.

Holding people’s faults against them often creates an impenetrable wall. But listen to Paul: “For anyone who is in Christ, there is a new creation: the old order is gone and a new being is there to see. It is all God’s work” (2 Corinthians 5:17-18). Indeed, we cannot let go of old hurts, but God can. Paul says: “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not holding anyone’s fault against them” (2 Corinthians 5:19). It is God’s work, but we are God’s ministers, because the God who reconciled the world to God entrusted to us “the message of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:19). This message calls us to let go of old hurts in the Name of God. It is the message our world most needs to hear.

These reflections are taken from Henri J.M. Nouwen’s Bread for the Journey.

I thought this was appropriate for the ending fo 2010 and the beginning of 2011.  I have seen and experienced so much hurt and brokenness that sometimes it is overwhelming.  Some I can address, some I can only watch; some are personal, some are communal and even worldwide.  What I do know is that I need to work as I can, to let go of my hurts of the past years because carrying them around does me no good.  I also need to work, as I can, to bring reconciliation where I experience brokenness and hurt.  We have been reconciled by Jesus and have been given the task of reconciliation in our world.

That is my task for the new year.

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