|Father Robert Baron|
Forgiveness means that you never give up on a person. You want what is best for them, you want them redeemed. You don't have to seethe with hatred and wish for vengance. I was so stoked by this homily.
Anger and forgiveness have a lot to do with weight loss. There was a popular self-help book in the 90s called "It's not what you're eating, it's what's eating you." Spiritual sickness tends to manifest itself on our bodies. We smoke, drink coffee, have a beer or two, and scream at people on the highway. Fat people eat! They eat their anger and suppress it, well at least I have. I have not thought anger, disappointment, or frustration to be appropriate for "a young lady" or "a Christian," so I've ignored the anger and eaten something to make myself feel better with a shot of serotonin in the form of something tasty.
The problem with self-help books is that their ideas tend to flame out when we try them. We try meditation and relaxation for a while, but we go back to old habits. The cool thing about living the Ancient faith of Orthodoxy is that falling off the wagon is built in. Confession works hand-in-hand with the rhythm of the liturgical year. Fasting, feasting, preparing, preparing to prepare preparing, and remembering are all done with food and exercise in mind. There's even the practice of liturgical squat-thrusts in the form of full metanias during the prayers of Saint Ephraim during Great Lent! Here is a Canadian monk discussing the prayer. After each phrase of the prayer, a full prostration is performed. This prostration is like a very slow squat-thrust (cross yourself, bow to your knees, get on all fours, place forehead on the ground.) The prayer of Saint Ephraim is said several times in each service during Great Lent.