Forbearance … My New Favorite Word


Forbearance … My New Favorite Word
By Bernadette A Moyer

Forbearance is my new favorite word and not one that we hear used very often today. According to the dictionary; forbearance means patience, restraint, tolerance and in a legal agreement to stop payments or debts for a period of time.

Over the weekend I watched a Hallmark movie set in the 1940’s where this word was used by the main character as she sat at the Thanksgiving dinner table. She thanked everyone for their “forbearance.” This character was accepted by a family and married in a prearranged wedding when she was pregnant with another man’s baby. Her father sent her away. It was intended to punish her but what she found was true love and forgiveness and in her own words, forbearance.

“Ye great sinners, and yet great saints who need great forbearance.” Last year I received a handwritten letter asking me to “try and suspend judgement” in regard to the actions of someone who affected my life. Sounds like forbearance to me. It came from a very wise old Christian woman.

Today with rapid information we make rapid judgements. We have instant news and some of it is faulty. Some time ago, it was posted online that Jon Bon Jovi died and this turned out to be false information as he is still very much alive. Penn State’s Former Coach Joe Paterno was reported “dead” before his actual passing. We don’t read much in print anymore since the daily paper seems to be more like day old news. The internet is faster and more current. But did we lose something in our attempt for faster is better? Have we lost a certain degree of accuracy?

We judge people, we think we know. The news reports a story and we have already decided who is guilty. Who amongst us wants to be judged without all the facts? Yet it happens every single day. Our ego tells us “we know” and so we judge all the while never allowing for the “suspension of judgement.” Forbearance is my new favorite word and more than that it will be something I try to practice.

Patience, self-control, tolerance, restraint, forbearance, who among us doesn’t need more of this in our daily life? Forbearance, I just love the sound of it!

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