Facing the hurt, understanding the truth and forgiving the offender (even when you don’t want to—see pg 153!). Also, Therapeutic Letter Writing and the idea that you may need to periodically repeat the Confession-Forgiveness exercises.
- Having prepared your heart for this chapter by paying adequate attention to the principles of the previous chapters (especially, chapters 10 and 11, 3 and 4) is key.
- Looking back into the past is not to get people to live there but to visit long enough to identify issues that have lingered into the present and may cripple the future if not healed.
- Looking back into the past and dealing with relationships with parents is not to dishonor them but to honor them. Exodus 20:12 relates the 5th of the 10 Commandments.
- Would your allowing unhealed issues from your parents to impact negatively your marriage, parenting, friendships, professional, and extended-family relationships honor your parents? NO!
- Healing the past hurts, granting forgiveness, blessing your parents, and appreciating any and all the good they did for you would allow you to not only be free from improper control but become free to give a new legacy to those in your sphere of influence.
- You would honor your parents in God’s eyes whether they are living or dead, whether they know it or not, and whether they care or not. You have honored them and God and given others an example of love.
- Scripture Memory: Isaiah 61:1-3 and Romans 12:15 work well in Chapter 12
- Two Marriage Staff Meetings: pages 150 and 154/155 – May need extended time.
Small Group Questions
- Optional: Others want to share their genogram.
- What are the benefits of becoming free of childhood hurts?
- How does blaming others delay the mourning process?
- Give an example of freedom that you’ve experienced in an area of your life that was once a childhood hurt.
- What was a defining moment for you in the process of facing the hurt, mourning the hurt, understanding the truth, and forgiving the offender?
- What is one positive way your spouse supported you as you went through this process?
- What new thoughts or feelings do you have about forgiveness?
- Save the final 10 minutes of the Small Group Time to pray thanking God for His power, love, and forgiveness and asking for His wisdom, power, and Holy Spirit to help each person to experience even more freedom in Christ.