Job 11:16-18 - You will surely forget your trouble, recalling it only as waters gone by. Life will be brighter than noonday, and darkness will become like morning. You will be secure, because there is hope; you will look about you and take your rest in safety.
Most people forget something every once in a while. Perhaps work has been extra busy or family events are taking you from one place to the next. Whatever the reason, usually your mind will later come back to where your thoughts were and you’ll remember.
But it can be disconcerting, especially for those who are suffering with emotional pain, to forget things on a regular basis and your mind doesn’t bring itself around. You find yourself more than just forgetful.
This kind of forgetfulness is not just trying to figure out where you left your keys or forgetting what you needed to purchase at the store. This kind of forgetfulness runs deep. It throws you off course. The more you can’t remember the more stressed you become. The stress then causes you to forget something else and the cycle goes on.
Forgetfulness can also be a sign of a medical problem and needs to be addressed.
Find warning signs from the National Institute on Aging that may indicate a discussion with your physician in their article, “Forgetfulness: Knowing When to Ask for Help,” such as asking the same question or repeating the same story over and over.
Now that we’ve taken a look at the negative aspects of forgetfulness let’s talk about when forgetfulness can also be something desirable. An example would be when you want to forget the hurtful things you’ve gone through in the past. You want to forget the bad things, but your mind keeps bringing it back up again.
One of the reasons why we can’t forget may be because we haven’t forgiven those who have hurt us. Forgiving someone can seem like the opposite thing that you should do.
You may also believe that if you forgive it will mean that the person is getting off the hook. But they aren’t. What they did was still wrong and hurtful. And I’m not trying to make light of what’s happened to you. But forgiveness is not for the other person. It’s for you.
When we’re able to let go of the past then, just as the Bible verse above says, our pain will flow down the river towards peace. With time the light in our life will prevail and the darkness will be transformed into hope and rest.
This may seem like an unreachable goal. It is on our own. But with the help of friends, family and God our forgetfulness can truly be a good thing.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.