There is great truth that having a root of bitterness will only cause you pain. But does forgiving mean forgetting? I definitely do not think so. In my situation, that would mean forgetting all the evil that has been done to me and walking blindly back into a dangerous situation. I believe that in order to act wisely, we must remember some things, lest we see our own history repeated again and again.
Is it possible to achieve a balance of forgiving, yet remembering? I dare say it is, though I'm still working on forgiving. Today, I quoted lots of scripture. "Charity suffereth long and is kind" was audibly repeated over and over. Then, as I began feeling that it wasn't fair that judgement wasn't meted out, I remembered this blessed truth: "Vengeance is mine, and I will repay, saith the Lord."
Then, as I went about doing this and that in charity, I would snuff out the root of bitterness with the knowledge that my God will judge as He deems fit. I hope that one day, I won't have to battle with myself to let it go. At that point, I believe I will have reached forgiveness. At that point, I will be able to make wise decisions without grudges and revenge guiding my thoughts.
It has dawned on me that just as God will judge that which has been done to me, if I do something in return, I'll be judged as well! It reminds me of two little kids fighting. We'll call them Freddy and Carl. Freddy hits Carl, and Carl hits Freddy back. Does it stop there? Not normally! They go on fighting, and it escalates until one of them has finally had enough or someone else intervenes. When an adult does get involved, they both get punished. Whereas, if Carl had just walked away, he would have been blameless.
Oh, to stand blameless before God! This is my ultimate goal, and the greatest reason I must forgive. I must rise above, rather than stooping to a lower level. I must climb ever higher, and let God fend off those who would hurt me. And that's just the point. As I do what God has told me to, He will protect me and guide me safely on. He will mete out judgement as He sees fit. I need only look to Him and press on.