This is one of the well-known maxims that, no matter how many times it is said, has never lost its power to inspire. But, let’s face it: It’s not easy to say sorry in words or in actions, especially if the person you’re sorry for doesn’t deserve it.
As we get ready to forgive, there’s always a voice inside of us that says there are a million reasons why the other person should be the one to say sorry. So, how do we get rid of the thoughts that only make us more angry?
Best Books on Forgiveness and Letting Go
Don’t Feel Stuck! by Jaclyn Johnston
The title says everything. For us to truly achieve our life goals and reach our full potential, we must get rid of everything that stands in our way.
As you may already know, the fears that come with forgiveness can keep us from moving forward for the rest of our lives. These fears make us think more about the unfair treatment we got. We spend a lot of time thinking about how things might have been different if we had not been offended in the first place.
Keep thinking about the past is like not giving your soul the happiness it needs. This is what Jaclyn Johnson says in her book, Don’t Feel Stuck! The book talks about how to forgive yourself by letting go of all the thoughts that aren’t good for you and setting up a mindset-belief system that is good for your soul.
The Book of Ho’oponopono by Luc Bodin
We can make peace with ourselves and the world around us quickly if we forgive. Then we can enjoy the peace and calm we couldn’t have had before because of the resentment we had inside of us.
In this book, Luc Bodin talks about the Hawaiian concept of forgiveness and healing in great detail. To learn how to shed a heavy heart and welcome what’s important for your progress, read the book. You’ll also learn to let go of self-limiting thoughts.
A step-by-step guide is how the book is written. You can read while you do each step.
Amish Grace: How Forgiveness Transcended Tragedy by Donald B. Kraybill, Steven M. Nolt, David L. Weaver-Zercher
Amish people are known for their strong reactions, so everyone thought they would be just as strong after the shooting at the Pennsylvania school. Everyone else, that is, except the Amish.
The world was waiting with baited breath to see how the Amish tried to get justice for the people who were killed. It turned out that they had completely different ideas about how to bring the tragedy to an end.
In this book, the co-authors look into the religious background of the Amish and see if their ability to forgive so quickly was based on their religious ideals or not.
The book tries to find out how forgiveness affects people in a closed-off society.
Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace by Miroslav Volf
People may say that giving and forgiving sound alike, but that doesn’t mean that the two things go together. People show kindness to each other when they’re hurt by something bad that happened.
But the author of this book, Miroslav Volf, thinks about forgiveness in a different way than most people do. Volf tries to look at how giving and forgiving are linked, and how Christians can practice the two ideas in a society that is more likely to be selfish and hateful.
The book talks about forgiveness from a Christian point of view, and it also talks about other good things about the Christian faith. This book was chosen by the Archbishop of Canterbury for his 2006 Lent study. You can get your own copy and find out why it was chosen.
Judgment Detox by Gabby Bernstein
Judgment and forgiveness are usually linked together. How quickly you break free from the habit of judging yourself and others is a good indicator of how quickly you can forgive. Judgment Detox is a book that talks about how to forgive people by giving up our judgmental persona.
The book talks about self-forgiveness, which is a part of forgiveness that many people don’t want to talk about. Gabby Bernstein says that in order to forgive others effectively, you must first forgive yourself. You can only do this if you stop blaming yourself for your rather sorry state of things.
The book explains how self-judgment can keep you from letting go of your emotions. When you keep having negative emotions build up inside of you, they’ll eventually boil over and make you act even more irrationally.
The Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold Path for Healing Ourselves and Our World by Desmond Tutu and Mpho Tutu
Archbishop Desmond Tutu has had a long and distinguished career as a peacemaker. His most important job was chairing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa after apartheid.
He has also worked in a lot of war-torn places around the world, trying to bring together the warring factions and get them to work together peacefully and harmoniously.
He focused more on the people who had been hurt in most of his missions than the people who had hurt them, The archbishop thinks that true peace can only come when people who have been hurt forgive their attackers and let go of their anger. The Book of Forgiving is a book that Desmond Tutu helped write. It talks about the four main steps for healing and forgiving.
Forgiveness is a Choice: A Step-by-Step Process for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope by Robert D. Enright
Forgiveness is a choice, but one that we have to make no matter how hard it is. Forgiving others can make us feel like we’re giving up our pride and self-respect. The other person might have to admit their mistakes for a long time before we can forgive them.
It’s up to us whether we want to live with that false sense of hope. It’s also possible to forgive quickly so that we don’t have to carry the weight of resentment.
Robert D. Enright, through his book, Forgiveness Is a Choice, gives us a lot of options for dealing with anger and depression after we’ve been hurt. What makes the book so easy to understand is that it is written in a how-to, list-style. This makes the lessons in the book very clear.
Forgive and Forget: Healing the Hurts We Don’t Deserve by Lewis B. Smedes
This is hard enough. Trying to forgive and forget is a lot more difficult than it used to be, though.
We’ve been told to forgive and forget since the beginning of time. But how do you forget a gruesome event that keeps replaying in your mind when you’re in a calm and peaceful state of mind? Isn’t it fair for us to forgive but not forget the names and places that remind us of that bad thing?
Lewis B. Smedes says that even though it’s hard to forgive and forget, it’s not impossible. In this book, the author uses real-life stories and illustrations to show how possible it is to forgive. He talks about how we can be completely healed when we not only forgive but also forget the bad parts of our lives.
The book comes with extra material and a reader’s guide to help you fully understand the hard-to-understand idea of forgiveness.
Searching for God in the Garbage by Bracha Goetz
The title of this book makes you think. God can’t be found in the garbage. He can’t. But if you look hard enough, you might find God in the trash. Author Bracha Goetz is trying to show how painful it can be to look for happiness in places that don’t seem like the best places.
After you’ve been hurt, you may want to move to a new place, try to forget about the person who hurt you, or do other things that only last for a short time. These things are only temporary.
That’s not all: In Searching for God in the Garbage, Goetz talks about how important it is to be patient when you’re looking for true forgiveness. The author says that if we work hard to find things that help us forgive easily, we can one day find a life filled with love and happiness.
Forgiving As We’ve Been Forgiven: Community Practices for Making Peace by L. Gregory Jones and Célestin Musekura
In this book, the title makes you think. The question is: Is it true that only if we’re given forgiveness should we forgive? Not at all.
All of our sins were forgiven by Christ, even though we didn’t deserve it. This seems to be a theme in the book. So, if God, who is full of grace and mercy, already forgave us our sins, who are we not to forgive our own people?
Co-author Célestin Musekura brings in first-hand experiences from the post-genocide Rwanda that he has lived through with his wife and two children. These experiences show us how quickly a country or society can get back on its feet if we can just forgive each other.
Forgiveness is one of the best ways to show love and kindness. Because forgiving the other person is not a good thing to do. So, waiting for them to admit their mistakes only makes you feel worse.