Offence stole my joy.

How do you respond when, on purpose or accidentally, someone offends you and hurts your feelings – badly? As a Christian I know what I have to do: forgive and forget. But as a woman with a rough upbringing that is easier said than done. I am angry! I want to be vindicated (because I am right, and they are wrong)! I want to give this person a ‘piece of my mind’, and let them know they have offended me (and it won’t be pretty).

They hurt my heart! That’s just not acceptable! They must suffer the consequences! I kept repeating these scenarios in my head, feeling full satisfaction as if though it was happening. I really wanted to cut this person off from my life forever, but this is not just any person; they are family.

I prayed to God to take my anger, disappointment, and resentment away. It didn’t happen like magic. He made me walk slowly through this one. I couldn’t enjoy church service because I was so frustrated. I asked my friends to pray for me and felt my heart soften. I looked around the congregation and saw familiar faces of people who I really love, and who love me. I am not alone.

Jesus asked me to forgive, not as a sign of weakness, but to save me from useless suffering. “Anger is like a rocking chair – so much energy wasted going nowhere.” I realized that offence had stolen my joy. Did they even know they had offended me? I bet they didn’t even recall the conversation today. I’m sure they had a wonderful day with their family, enjoying beautiful late summer weather, maybe time with friends, and Sunday lunch. Not me…

At home, after church, I had a heated discussion with my husband, desperately defending my point of view. His strong conviction (which I absolutely admire in him) is that family is everything. I have witnessed again and again when he has exercised this belief. And it always has a positive outcome. He encouraged me to let go, but I wasn’t ready to surrender. The wound was still raw. With a mental sigh, I decided to, at least, reconsider. I knew deep in my heart that he was right.

In the end, what would I achieve by cutting them off? Broken relationships and broken hearts. Is that what I am about? I had to take some time to realize I am loved by God who has forgiven my worst sins. I know even though it’s not easy it’s still right thing to do. So, I forgive – even though I don’t feel like it right now. In faith, I will not allow that offence to steal my joy, break my family, or drive a wedge in my relationships any longer. I choose forgiveness.


Published by:


I am Lena Cebula. I am wife and mother of three beautiful children. I am drug addiction and human trafficking survivor. Today I am Christian, social justice advocate, blogger, professional public speaker and host of Love&BLoved Podcast. I am sharing the Good News of God’s love and creating awareness about the reality of human sex trafficking. I am an author of spiritual autobiography called 'Miraculous: my journey from hell to heaven,' you can get it through Amazon Please read and invite others who need to hear stories of forgiveness and second chances. Portion of proceeds goes to Fight4freedom. We fight against sex trafficking and support the work of outreach, education, prevention, awareness and survivor care.