Difference between love and forgiveness?

I recently read an article in the blogs here on this site about how we don’t have to–and even should not–forgive people who have wronged us if they are not sorry. This is **not **to say that we should not love them–that we should not wish for what is best for them, but forgiving them is not something that should be done. This is confusing to me because I had always thought of love and forgiveness as being the same thing. I guess this means I don’t really know what forgiveness is really. I’ve been told it’s not simply to stop being angry at a person–that it is permissible to feel anger about what they did every time you think about it if you can’t help it. What does it mean to forgive a person really and what makes it different from just loving them and wishing the best for them despite whatever they did?

Here is the link to the article: catholic.com/blog/tim-staples/to-forgive-or-not-to-forgive-%E2%80%94-that-is-the-question

The result of the balance between love and forgivness is peace.

2304 Respect for and development of human life require peace. Peace is not merely the absence of war, and it is not limited to maintaining a balance of powers between adversaries. Peace cannot be attained on earth without safeguarding the goods of persons, free communication among men, respect for the dignity of persons and peoples, and the assiduous practice of fraternity. Peace is “the tranquillity of order.” Peace is the work of justice and the effect of charity. (CCC)

The peron/people who were wronged still need justice. The justice they need is not the justice that their hearts and minds cry for. It is Almighty God’s justice. This requires faith that the Almighty God will indeed have a just way to make right what is wrong. Last weeks readings reminded us that we sentenced Jesus, Our Lord, to death. By our own wrongdoing (killing God) we could not fix the wrong, but God himself fixed the wrong (being crusified) by conquering death and raising himself from the dead. It is the faith and hope that what ver we experienced that was wrong will be redeemed by God; and releasing our desire to fix what was done wrong to us.

When we practice the charity we are to not give the person who is doing wrong endless oportunities to hurt us, but to be firm in stating what is wrong, how to fix the wrong, and to avoid enabling them to continue to do wrong. This is the tough love that many of us are arraid of because we have a false notion of what charity (love) is.

Good question.

I think the article misses a very important point, that forgiveness is not something we do just for the other person, like we are doing them a great big favor at our own expense. When we forgive, we are the main beneficiaries. We let go of the resentment, self-pity, and self-absorption which would otherwise hold our own spirit captive. If we wait for the other person to show remorse and ask forgiveness, we postpone our own healing.

I am not saying it is easy, and I have not recently been put to that sort of test, but I think we can, and should, go a bit further than what it says in that article.

Love always forgives; its part of its nature. Read 1st Cor 13.

That is not correct. We MUST forgive anyone who has wronged us even they are not sorry and tell us they do not want our forgiveness.

CCC 2862 The fifth petition begs God’s mercy for our offences, mercy which can penetrate our hearts only if we have learned to forgive our enemies, with the example and help of Christ.

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