Thanksgiving and Forgiveness, cliché but true.

Three years ago. Three years ago I went through something. A dark phase. Its something we always see happening in movies, and yet you think its too cliché. But that'll change when it happens to you. You end up saying more cliché things like, "I never thought this would happen to me", or "I never thought it felt like this". And then more cliché thoughts : like how you'd end up doing really stupid things. Stupid, self-destructive things.

But then you start to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Slowly, you pick up what's left of yourself and use it to start over.

Bad things happen to the best of us, that's another cliché. At the end of it all, you'd be thankful they happened. Because everything shapes us to become the person that we should be, if we only learn to look at the bright side, which is, by the way - another cliché.

I've been carrying this burden around for three years. Three years. Three years of the same questions, of the same wretched thoughts. Three years of trash talking. Three years of indirect sarcasm pointing towards who I referred to as "the person who ruined my life". The hate I felt can't be expressed. I can talk about it all night, all week, all month, and it wasn't enough.

I have been praying about it, to be honest. I kept asking my friends, how could I ever forgive someone when this person hasn't even asked for it. No hint of remorse. Nothing. Zero. Nada. Then I keep hearing about how we should forgive everyone who's ever done us wrong, whether or not they ask for it. I find this to be very difficult.

There were so many days when I thought, "I've forgiven". But then I realize I've been lying to myself. A couple of times, I've said that if this person comes to me and asks for it, I will. "If only".

I've never felt so much hate in my life. And I was very irresponsible with handling it. I won't say that I regret what I said, I won't say I'd take it back, but I know that what I did was wrong. Someone once told me that nobody deserves that kind of treatment, no matter how much damage they've caused you. Its not your job to judge. But I was out of control. It hurt me so much. God knows it hurt me so much. And I know I couldn't blame myself for it either, but I should've known better. I guess I did, but I didn't listen to myself. Mister Mister Anger got the best of me.

So many things happening to us - things you see every where. So many words exchanged between people. Just because you see it, or hear it all the time doesn't change the fact that when you're involved in a certain clichéd situation, it's never the same. In fact, you feel like nothing's so cliché anymore. It's just like in the movies, but nothing like it at all. That's what I would always say. That's my personal cliché.

Illustration by Beth Budesheim

This morning as soon as I got up, I prayed (which I forget to do on most days because I mostly wake up just minutes before the driver picks me up and I'm all over the place), and I already thanked God for the beautiful day he has given me.

Indeed, today is. Everyday is, but today God made it extra special.

I received a message in my FB inbox from someone who I hoped, but never expected to write me. As soon as I read it, I teared up. Ten words stood out the most.

"I wanna say sorry sa nangyari dati and nasaktan ka".

The whole message was very sincere, but these words - they were all I needed. At that moment I wanted to initiate a hug. If this happened in person, I would do just that.

"I'm sorry too, and I forgive you."

That's what I would've said. In fact I did, but in a lot of sentences and a couple of paragraphs. Sincerely, from my heart, I am willing to establish a friendship again, if it is God's will. I am not closing my doors.

A burden was lifted off of my shoulders. How I'm feeling right now, cannot be put into words. I am just overwhelmed. I cry almost every time I say this in front of our brethren in church. I cry whenever I testify of God's goodness to me and my family. But this, this one I didn't expect. I was expecting that God would teach me the hard way of forgiving. I knew it was gonna take years, and I was willing. Anything to get me by. Anything to make me finally burn (not bury, because you can dig it back up) this box of hate. Instead, God gave me this. This awesome present of taking the weight off my shoulders. Of both our shoulders.

And just like that, I was shaking. I was speechless. God is so good to me. God is so good to us. And I cannot help but feel happy for this person, who humbly came to me even after all these years, to sincerely ask for forgiveness. Because I know that in humility, God blesses us even more. Recognition and acknowledging our mistakes is never easy. But I thank God because He has touched us both.

I am so moved. I'm still in shock, but I am blissed out. Completely blissed out.

The New Year's coming. So much has happened this year. I remember saying that 2010 was going to be awesome. It was. It also wasn't. My Mom's gone, I married a man who I am sure God gave me. And I have learned the power of forgiveness. I have lost an enemy, and have hopefully gained a friend. If not now, maybe someday. In God's perfect time.

I've never really mentioned this, because I sort of despised the name. But our ministry is called "Saved by Grace". Now, I have the heart to acknowledge that. Well in fact, in so many ways, we are. In so many ways, I have been.

Thank you, Lord.
Thank you, Grace.


  1. That is so so beautful. I'll add another cliche to the list, haha, which is 'Miracles really do come true'. I just have so much hope when I read stories like this. Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. I love this post, Abbie. Very inspiring. Plus, I can very much relate.

  3. This was a very inspirational post! Great blog!


  4. At least, you've forgiven that person na. Magaan sa pakiramdam, I guess. =)