Jesus said to turn the other cheek

He also said to forgive 7 times 70

Easy for Him to say

He was God

Or at least the son of God


How do I get to the place

Where I forgive those

Who disrespect me and malign me

Those who could care less about my feelings

Yet I still care about theirs


Why is forgiveness so hard

Why does it take so much out of you

Why is it easier to hold on to a grudge

Rather than to let it go

Am I doing something wrong


If it is true that we are to love others

As we love ourselves

And we stay mad at ourselves

For our misdeeds and misdoing

Is it realistic to easily forgive someone


If you extend the olive branch

Of friendship and kindness and forgiveness

And it is not returned

Should you really keep trying

Even if you feel it is a lost cause


Or will persistence win the day

With the honesty and sincerity of words

Be recognized and acknowledged

Followed by a reasonable attempt

To let bygones be bygones


Is this one of the famous battles

Between head and heart

With both having opposing views

But the same hold on your psyche

Neither winning, neither losing


Sometimes I wonder

If our lack of ability to forgive

Is truly more rooted in our

Bruised ego and hurt feelings

Perhaps the pain we feel is comforting


If I were to release my anger and my pain

Only to be knocked again

Who becomes the bigger fool

Me for trying

Or them for doing


I wish that such matters were as easy

As a game of tic-tac-toe

Or perhaps it is

Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose

Neither happens if you donít take a chance


So I resolve to forgive

To be the bigger and better person

Give of myself as I would want others

To give to me

And perhaps this time everyone will win.


Chuck Smoot

September 1, 2002


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