By: Carole L. Haines 

While working through a Step-Study with Celebrate Recovery, we were asked to pray about people we need to make amends with. People we have hurt in our past lives. I went to people in person, by email and I tried to share with them all. Some brushed it off, others tried to act as if they didn’t do anything wrong, despite my admitting my wrong in the situation. It was awkward and painful, but very freeing. God’s Word puts it this way. 

If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 
(Romans 12:18) 

I did everything that was humanly possible to try to set things right. It produced in me an “As far as it depends on you,” kind of Peace. I needed to release myself from any further obligation to try to make things right. I had done what God asked, gone forth to seek reconciliation and make amends. I was at peace, I was released, I was free. It felt marvelous.  

However, there was one person whom I could not find, not even on Facebook. I found someone I thought was her, but when I messaged, “Hey, I’m looking for the Mary who went to ____________High School. Is that you? I heard nothing back. I couldn’t make amends with her. But I sensed from the Lord that I had done all that I could to try to find her, and I needed to release myself. I had really hurt this person after High School and wanted to apologize and seek forgiveness, but I couldn’t. That was hard. God spoke this scripture to me about it. 

The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. (Romans 8:6) 

I would love to find Mary and apologize for my insensitivity in College/High School days, but I have done all that is humanly possible. I must leave this in God’s capable hands. The making amends part of my Recovery was hard but so freeing. So, I would encourage you to go to those you’ve hurt and seek to make amends. You are not responsible for their response, just for your own heart that seeks to be forgiven. Perhaps the person will reject you, perhaps they have passed out of this life. But either way, God holds us only to do as much as is possible for us, no more, no less. We get to a point where we must release ourselves in the power of Christ and stop holding these things against ourselves. We are all sinners, we have all messed up in our relationships at some point. We can’t possibly go back and do it over again But we can seek forgiveness, first from the Father, then from others and finally from ourselves.  

If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 
(Romans 12:18) 

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