My teacher had each of us students get a clear plastic bag and a sack of
potatoes. Then for every person we'd refuse to forgive in our life, we had
to take a potato, write on it the name of the person and the date, and put
the spud in the plastic bag. Some of the bags, as you can imagine, very,
Then she told us to carry this bag full of the potatoes with us everywhere
for one whole week. We had to keep it at our bedside every night, on the
car seat when in the car, next to our desk at work, etc.
The hassle of lugging that bag around with us made it so clear what a
weight we were carrying spiritually, and how we had to pay attention to it
all the time to not forget, and keep leaving it in embarrassing places.
Naturally, the condition of the potatoes deteriorated into a nasty slime.
That helped us appreciate the price we pay for keeping our pain and heavy
Too often we think of forgiveness as a gift to the other person. While
that's true, it clearly is also a gift for ourselves!
So the next time we decide we can't (won't) forgive someone,we can ask
ourselves, "Isn't MY bag heavy enough?"
We can empty that sack out before it gets too heavy and slimy. Or better
yet, we don't even have to start to put those potatoes into it. We can be
willing to forgive in the same way that the Lord has forgiven us.