The Meaning of Forgiveness from A 3-Year Old Kid

The Meaning of Forgiveness from A 3-Year Old Kid

A blogger Mary Katherine Backstrom regularly shares some moments of life on her Facebook page. There’s one particularly touching moment with her daughter that went viral on Facebook because of her daughter’s wise words about the meaning of forgiveness.

the meaning of forgiveness by Holland
Facebook of Mary Katherine Backstrom

We all know that even adults have struggled with the meaning of forgiveness. We have read so many books about how and why to forgive those who have wronged us. But many still have a hard time getting it.

Who would guess that a 3-year old kid could summarize what forgiveness means in a handful of innocent words? Read the Facebook post of Katherine below to know what the kid says.

My daughter and I just had a knock-down, drag-out bedtime hour. Finally, about ten minutes ago, I put her to bed and…

Mary Katherine Backstrom 发布于 2019年7月12日周五

The Meaning of Forgiveness According to Experts

According to UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, the 3-year old kid is not wrong:

“Psychologists generally define forgiveness as a conscious, deliberate decision to release feelings of resentment or vengeance toward a person or group who has harmed you, regardless of whether they actually deserve your forgiveness.

Just as important as defining what forgiveness is, though, is understanding what forgiveness is not. Experts who study or teach forgiveness make clear that when you forgive, you do not gloss over or deny the seriousness of an offense against you.

Forgiveness does not mean forgetting, nor does it mean condoning or excusing offenses. Though forgiveness can help repair a damaged relationship, it doesn’t obligate you to reconcile with the person who harmed you or release them from legal accountability.

Instead, forgiveness brings the forgiver peace of mind and frees him or her from corrosive anger.

While there is some debate over whether true forgiveness requires positive feelings toward the offender, experts agree that it at least involves letting go of deeply held negative feelings.

In that way, it empowers you to recognize the pain you suffered without letting that pain define you, enabling you to heal and move on with your life.”

mother and daughter

Basically, Holland said the same thing, just in 25 kid-friendly words. It is a great reminder coming from an innocent mouth that the adults must forgive so that we won’t have a tummy ache in our hearts.

Thank you, Holland, for the sweet reminder. 

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