On or off the hook

By Dave Henning / May 9, 2012

Bob Merritt closes When Life’s Not Working with this wonderful quote by Shauna Niequist from her book Cold Tangerines.  Shauna describes her battle with forgiveness and compares unforgiveness to keeping someone on the ‘hook’: “When I’m trying to forgive someone I picture myself physically lifting that person off a big hook.  I never want to.  I prefer to stew and focus my anger on them like a laser pointer . . .”

She goes on to discuss a friend who really made her angry.  For a time she loved being angry with that friend, thereby repeatedly putting her on that hook.

Shauna continues: ” . . . I wanted her to apologize for what she did.  Loudly. Publicly.  And give me a present too . . . .   But nothing. No phone calls.  No emails. . . . Nothing.  Why should I forgive someone who doesn’t even think she needs to be forgiven.  This is why . . . . Because she’s not the only one on the hook.  Because every time I hang her up on that hook, the hook reaches down and grabs me too.”

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Dave Henning

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