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Cultivate a good life and record it.



good life by christy bullock


Part of cultivating a good life is learning how to forgive.

As a young girl, I was put in a situation that would change my life forever in so many ways. Not only was my innocence taken away, so was my ability to trust and forgive, or at least I thought it was…for over 25 years. That’s right, for 25 years I hung on to the hurt because I couldn’t forgive, or more truthfully, I didn’t know how to forgive.

There were lots of people it seemed for me to be angry at — the abuser, the one who put me in this situation, the one who knew about it but did nothing to help stop it, the one who should have protected me as a child but didn’t. The problem was that all of these people (except the abuser) were people I still had relationships with in my life and even though we carried on as if nothing ever happened, deep down in my heart there was a part where I had locked away all the hurt and resentment that I couldn’t seem to let go of. Over the years though, I began to realize that every important relationship in my life was affected by the rust on that lock and if I really wanted to have peace, then I had to be willing to be brave enough to open the lock and let out the pain because only then could the healing begin.

I started slowly with one person at a time. I put myself in his or her position and by doing that, I was able to see things through a different perspective. I began to understand better why things happened the way they did. Did that mean I agreed with what they did? Absolutely not. But for the first time, instead of anger, I felt sincere empathy. With empathy came a feeling of love, with love came forgiveness, and with forgiveness came peace.

When I learned how to forgive I finally felt peace.

Through the years I have had the opportunity to forgive over and over (lucky me!). Some of those opportunities were just as big as the one above, but even though forgiving someone is hard to do, it’s something I want to do. That doesn’t mean it’s always an easy process though; it just means I’m choosing to forgive.

Let’s face it, life is complicated. We are all victims to the injustices of life to some degree: abuse, infidelity, betrayal, heartbreak, the hurtful words of others, the list goes on and on. But I’m a firm believer that each of us will need to be forgiven one day, so if I can forgive others then hopefully I, too, will be forgiven. Many times the offender may not seek our forgiveness, but once we understand how much happier our lives can be if we can forgive them anyway, it becomes a little easier to start the process.

If your pain is too deep to tackle alone, then seek professional help. If you’re holding a grudge, let it go. If you’ve chosen to be offended, then chose to forgive.

It all starts with a willing heart.

Note from Becky

Why do I have the feeling so many of you reading Christy’s message today can relate? The trials and hurt we each go through are not cookie-cutter experiences, but I’d be wiling to bet most of us have the need to truly forgive someone. Easier said than done? For most, absolutely. But it can be done. And it must be done.

I am so grateful for the heartfelt reminder that Christy has shared so openly with us today. She has been a dear friend for about 15 years. We have seen her go through some truly devastating challenges (her son died in a tragic accident at the age of 15, a divorce followed shortly after that, and I’m barely scratching the surface with just those two things). I know Christy has relied heavily on God and she has a beautiful support system … but ultimately Christy is in charge of her choices and she has chosen peace by the way of forgiveness. I love her so much for that… and a hundred other reasons.

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7 Responses

  1. Joy says:

    Thank you for sharing, Christy. You really touched me. Especially this bit ” I began to realize that every important relationship in my life was affected by the rust on that lock and if I really wanted to have peace, then I had to be willing to be brave enough to open the lock and let out the pain because only then could the healing begin.” I’m saddened by the injustice and pain you have endured and am inspired by your decision to choose forgiveness. May God keep enabling you to forgive, as He has forgiven you.

  2. Niki Tamaki-Natividad says:

    This blog was very inspiring and reminds me that grace and forgiveness is definitely the path to peace. Thank you both Christy and Becky for sharing such inspirational words and thoughts. Thank you for reminding me about perspective, my relationship with God , and my relationships with others–how we can have peace if we are able to accept things and people, provide forgiveness and grace, and learn how to deal with our grudges and hurts rather than bottle them and me be bitter about it.

  3. sarah says:

    What a wonderful story of forgiveness and love. I am truly in awe.

  4. Lisa W. says:

    WOW, first off I can totally relate, its SO hard to let it go, its SO hard to forget, forgive! This story has been very inspiring to me, thank you for that! Becky you must be very lucky to call Christy your friend!

  5. Desiree says:

    Wow! I have so much to learn from Christy. But I wholeheartedly agree that you must choose to forgive. And everyday, I try to make that choice because I want to be happy. I don’t want to live my life with anger in my heart. Forgiveness is difficult, but once I get to that point, I know I will feel liberated. Thank you for the much needed reminder.

  6. Sarah says:

    Beautiful post and a great reminder for all of us! Thank you for sharing your story with us Christy!

  7. Michele says:

    Thank you for sharing your story on forgiveness. It is truly one of the hardest thing for me to do. I joined my church over a year ago and shortly after joining, I decided with Jesus by my side to baptize as a Christian. There are so many things I’m learning and with time, I come to understand some things that I never understood before. My next thing I’ve worked on is forgiving. I’ve forgiven some things … it’s the bigger things, I’m afraid of. As slow as this process is for me, I know deep in my heart, I will be successful in forgiving those big moments. Thanks again for sharing, it was much needed for me today.