Is there a person in your life who find it difficult to forgive? Have you experienced situations inflicted by others so harshly, that you forgiving felt like it was out of the question? No worries—what you are feeling is valid and has been experienced by other people, too. And with The Gift of Forgiveness by Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt, you can be inspired into forgiving others.
Katherine Schwarzenegger shares stories and insight on forgiveness
The Gift of Forgiveness features 22 interviews from people who have experienced tragedy or loss. While some of these stories may be familiar to us (such as the stories of the Columbine shooting victims), they may nevertheless still seem too difficult to forgive or ever move on from.
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Luckily, each story ends with forgiveness and how the subject was able to move on, along with some insights they learned along the way. Pratt also includes personal anecdotes and reflections, and highlights specific lessons that can aid readers in their struggle towards forgiveness.
Given the variety and depth of each story, Pratt emphasizes one important point in her reflections: that forgiveness can be done, no matter the situation.
Oftentimes, we may feel that our situation is too painful to forgive those who wronged us. The author does not hope to invalidate that feeling. Instead, she takes a gentle and personal approach, hoping that through these stories, we can see that forgiveness is possible and worthwhile after all.
“Forgiveness starts with a choice, and then it becomes a process.”Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt
Why forgiveness is a gift
Can you remember a time when you were in a difficult situation? What did it feel like for you?
With the personal, story-like approach of the book, you will not feel alone with what you have experienced. Many of those interviewed give word-per-word, in-depth explanations of what they went through, as well as the exhaustion of holding on to pain and resentment as a result of not forgiving.
The subjects then carry the readers through the process of forgiving and how it felt once they have reached that point.
Many subjects alluded to forgiveness as different positive feelings in their life, some of which can be found in this quote:
“…It’s not between you and that person—it’s between you and yourself.” Instead of using the word “forgiveness,” Sue prefers to focus on other words, such as “balance,” “integration,” “recovery,” and “empathy.”Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt
Inspired by the stories and her own personal experience, Pratt expounds on these points further by talking about the importance of self-love, prayer, and releasing your feelings in the process towards forgiveness.
“Forgiveness is… an ongoing process to achieve your freedom and peace of mind from a particular incident or person.”Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt
How The Gift of Forgiveness this book has helped others
If you are in doubt of how this book can help you, there are countless reviews found online from people who were inspired to forgive after reading this book. Some notable ones include:
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“If you have anyone that you are still holding hostage in your head (i.e.- holding yourself hostage) then you need this book. It delves into the spiritual topic of forgiveness and examines the enormous benefits (spiritual, mental, physical) that we gain when we forgive others, and even forgive ourselves. In this rough world it is not possible that we won’t be hurt by the actions of others, that is inevitable. What we have control of, however, is how we respond and whether or not we choose to loosen the chains that hold us in anger, fear, and contempt through our unforgiveness of others. When we are free from these chains, then we can better serve ourselves, our families, and the world around us.”Kimberly A.
“I have discovered that it is a primary action we must take in our lives and hearts. I enjoyed this book and the stories that were in it. The sharing of their journey to accomplish their goal of forgiveness was a challenge and I am glad they each took the time to tell of their personal experiences. The LORD has had to help me forgive because although I was willing and wanted to forgive, I couldn’t do it on my own. Forgiving others keeps us from becoming bitter.”Patty P.
All in all, we see exactly why forgiveness would be a gift—because it liberates us from feelings of pain, and heals through faith and love! Without a doubt, The Gift of Forgiveness by Katherine Schwarzenegger Pratt is an inspiring book that will guide us in finding peace.