Reading #3 From Father Gregory Boyle, “Forgive Everyone Everything”

Sometime ago, I saw a bumper sticker that read “Forgive Everyone Everything.” That can be a pretty freeing idea if we can actually live it.
Forgiveness is about restoration of life; it’s about becoming whole again, about repairing broken relationships. It’s about resilience. And resilience is about bouncing back and allowing yourself to be restored so that things in life don’t topple you. We all know what it’s like to have our hearts hardened by resentment. But if we can forgive everyone everything then we can be freed from anger, hatred, and resentment.
Psychologists might say that resilience is about perception. Being resilient is about how you choose to see. Long after experiencing a traumatizing event, you can continue to see that event as traumatizing, and it will be traumatizing. Or you could see that event as an opportunity for growth and learning.
There’s no denying how difficult things can be. But the way out to the place of resilience, the place of restoration, the place of not allowing your heart to be hardened by resentment, relies on one thing: forgive everyone everything.