Stories of Kindness from Around the World

How Heavy Is Your Bag?

--by warmth, posted Jun 7, 2008

One of my teachers had each one of us bring a clear plastic bag and a sack of potatoes.  For every person we’d refuse to forgive in our life, we were told to choose a potato, write on it the name and date, and put it in the plastic bag.  Some of our bags, as you can imagine, were quite heavy.

We were then told to carry this bag with us everywhere for one week, putting it beside our bed at night, on the car seat when driving, next to our desk at work.

The hassle of lugging this around with us made it 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 to a nasty slime.  This was a great metaphor for the price we pay for keeping our pain and heavy negativity!

Too often we think of forgiveness as a gift to the other person, and while that’s true, it clearly is also a gift for ourselves!

So the next time you decide you can’t forgive someone, ask yourself… Isn’t MY bag heavy enough?

 - from

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Readers Comments

Juliet wrote: I have sent this to my sister far away from me. I wish she will have a change of heart one day. Thank you for sharing this story. It is very uplifting.
WillB wrote: Very nice! What a great story, with a great moral.
Kris wrote: Were i in that class, i would have had a question or two. Specifically what about those people who i am *willing* to forgive, but not yet *able*? Some wounds run very deep, and sometimes we are ready to forgive a bit before such is possible.
helpinghand wrote: Very good lesson on forgiveness. Thanks for sharing.
BedBug wrote: Thanks for sharing this idea.
Grammagussie wrote: Just when I think I have forgiven someone, I get around them and the old feelings emerge. I'll keep this exercise in mind as I try harder to let it go. Thanks for sharing.
arnee wrote: Thanks for sharing! I just read a quote saying that forgiveness is the highest, most beautiful form of love. And with it we will receive untold peace and happiness.
God bless you!
Suchitra wrote: Yes forgive & forget!That is the philosophy of life.
jessi wrote: Great story! Thank you for sharing it! If you do not mind, I may use this example and exercise with my Bible study. You may want to read Beth Moore, she has some wonderful bible studies on forgiveness and breaking free from our burdens and trials. Best of all to you,
awfief wrote: Wonderful! And for those that wonder if you can truly forgive something really "awful", my motto is "forgive, but do not forget." That way you're not making the same mistakes over and over, but you can still forgive another person if they've wronged you.

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