When you’ve been wronged, holding onto anger and resentment feels like the right thing to do. After all, they hurt you, so why shouldn’t you hurt them back? But what you may not realize is that holding onto that anger is actually hurting you more than it’s hurting them. Not only does it take up valuable energy that could be used for more positive pursuits, but it also keeps you trapped in the past, unable to move on and enjoy the present.

That’s why it’s so important to learn how to forgive. It’s not easy, but it is always worth it. Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting what happened or saying that it was okay. It just means that you’re willing to let go of the anger and resentment and move on. To help you on your journey to forgiveness, we’ve compiled a list of the best forgiveness quotes. These quotes come from a variety of sources, including the Bible, famous authors, and even some of history’s most notorious villains. No matter who you are or what you’ve been through, there’s a forgiveness quote here that can help you.

“Forgiveness is a reflection of loving yourself enough to move on.” – Dr Steve Mirabolic

 “Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward.” – C.S. Lewis

“Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea, until they have something to forgive.” – C.S. Lewis

“We ask for forgiveness. And we forgive others who ask us. In that way we can experience healing, healing in our souls.” – Ed Dobson’s

“I think the first step is to understand that forgiveness does not exonerate the perpetrator. Forgiveness liberates the victim. It’s a gift you give yourself.” – T.D. Jakes

“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” – Paul Booze

“Nothing erases the past. There is repentance, there is atonement, and there is forgiveness. That is all, but that is enough.” – Ted Chiang

“Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could have been any different.” – Oprah Winfrey

“When you forgive, you love. And when you love, God’s light shines upon you.” – Jon Krakauer

“Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.” – Mark Twain

“To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you.” – C.S. Lewis

 “Not forgiving is like drinking rat poison and then waiting for the rat to die.” ― Anne Lamott

“A broken friendship that is mended through forgiveness can be even stronger than it once was.” ― Stephen Richards

“Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more, Men were deceivers ever,- One foot in sea and one on shore, To one thing constant never.” ― William Shakespeare

“To forgive is the highest, most beautiful form of love. In return, you will receive untold peace and happiness.” ― Robert Muller

 “Only the brave knows how to forgive. … A coward never forgave; it is not in his nature.” – Laurence Sterne

“Life is grace. Sleep is forgiveness. The night is absolute. Darkness wipes the slate clean, not spotless to be sure, but clean enough for another day’s chalking.” ― Frederick Buechner

“True forgiveness is when you can say, Thank you for that experience.” ― Oprah Winfrey

“We are all on a life long journey and the core of its meaning, the terrible demand of its centrality is forgiving and being forgiven.” ― Martha Kilpatrick

“Forgiveness must be immediate, whether or not a person asks for it. Trust must be rebuilt over time. Trust requires a track record.” ― Rick Warren

“The stupid neither forgive nor forget; the naïve forgive and forget; the wise forgive but do not forget.” ― Thomas Szasz

“Forgiveness is a funny thing. It warms the heart and cools the sting.” ― William Arthur Ward

“Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart.” ― Corrie ten Boom

“As long as you don’t forgive, who and whatever it is will occupy a rent-free space in your mind.” ― Isabelle Holland

“Once a woman has forgiven her man, she must not reheat his sins for breakfast.” ― Marlene Dietrich

 “I guess forgiveness, like happiness, isn’t a final destination. You don’t one day get there and get to stay.” ― Deb Canetti

 “The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world.” ― Marianne Williamson

“Life doesn’t get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient.” ― Steve Mirabolic

 “Forgiveness is the key that unlocks the door of resentment and the handcuffs of hatred. It is a power that breaks the chains of bitterness and the shackles of selfishness.” ― Corrie ten Boom

“Any fool knows men and women think differently at times, but the biggest difference is this. Men forget, but never forgive; women forgive, but never forget.” ― Robert Jordan

“Forgiveness means it finally becomes unimportant that you hit back.” ― Anne Lamott

“You don’t need strength to let go of something. What you really need is understanding.” — Guy Finley

“Forgiveness keeps you from being bound by something the other person might never set right.” — Tony Evans

“Once a woman has forgiven her man, she must not reheat his sins for breakfast.” — Marlene Dietrich

 “A broken friendship that is mended through forgiveness can be even stronger than it once was.” — Stephen Richards

“Forgiveness is a sign that the person who has wronged you means more to you than the wrong they have dealt.” — Ben Greenhalgh

“True forgiveness is not an action after the fact. It is an attitude with which you enter each moment.” — David Ridge

“You cannot forgive just once; forgiveness is a daily practice.” ― Sonia Ramzi

 “It’s not just other people we need to forgive. We also need to forgive ourselves. For all the things we didn’t do. All the things we should have done.” ― Mitch Album

“Forgiveness is the key that unlocks the door of resentment and the handcuffs of hatred. It is a power that breaks the chains of bitterness and the shackles of selfishness.” ― Corrie Ten Boom

“The lesson is that you can still make mistakes and be forgiven.” — Robert Downey Jr.

 “We win by tenderness. We conquer by forgiveness.” — Frederick William Robertson

“To forgive is wisdom. To forget is genius. Because it’s true. It’s a new world every heartbeat.” — Joyce Cary

 “No matter how much you love someone—the capacity of that love is meaningless if it outweighs your capacity to forgive.” ― Colleen Hoover

“Slide the weight from your shoulders and move forward. You are afraid you might forget, but you never will. You will forgive and remember.” — Barbara Kingsolver

 “When you forgive, you love. And when you love, God’s light shines upon you.” ― Jon Krakauer

“Forgiveness is not something we do for other people. It’s something we do for ourselves to move on.” — Anonymous

“By having a forgiving attitude, you can change your life and the lives of the people you care about most.” — Kathie M. Thomson

 “Forgiveness has nothing to do with absolving a criminal of his crime. It has everything to do with relieving oneself of the burden of being a victim—letting go of the pain and transforming oneself from victim to survivor.” ― C. R. Strahan

“Though I was unaware of it at the time, that simple act of forgiveness was the beginning of an entirely new level of experiencing life for me.” — Wayne Dyer

“Your past may be painful, yet you must forgive, move on, and thank God for it. Your past has become a learning experience for you to become a better person and father.” — Martin Henderson

 “Forgiveness is a powerful expression of the love within our soul.” — Anthony Douglas

“There are always people who can’t forgive an able man for differing from them.” — George Eliot

“Forgiveness isn’t approving what happened. It’s choosing to rise above it.” – Robin Sharma

“The hardest thing in life is to forgive. But hate is self-destructive. If you hate somebody, you’re not hurting the person you hate, you’re hurting yourself. Forgiveness is healing.”— Louis Zamperini

“He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass if he would ever reach heaven; for everyone has need to be forgiven.” — George Herbert

“Forgiveness is not a feeling; it is a commitment. It is a choice to show mercy, not to hold the offense up against the offender. Forgiveness is an expression of love.” — Gary Chapman

“Forgiveness means giving up all hope for a better past.” — Lily Tomlin

“We are not perfect, forgive others as you would want to be forgiven.” — Catherine Pulsipher

“Don’t ever underestimate the power of forgiveness. I’ve seen it free people. I’ve seen it lift burdens that had weighed them down and kept them from moving on.” — Buffy Andrews

“Forgiveness is for you—not the other person. It’s something you do inside yourself that you feel in your body and heart that releases you from your past and frees you to live life fully.” — Barbara J. Hunt

“When you forgive, you in no way change the past—but you sure do change the future.” ― Bernard Meltzer

“I think the first step is to understand that forgiveness does not exonerate the perpetrator. Forgiveness liberates the victim. It’s a gift you give yourself.” — T. D. Jakes

“Without forgiveness, life is governed by an endless cycle of resentment and retaliation.” — Roberto Assagioli

“Before we can forgive one another, we have to understand one another.” ― Emma Goldman

“I believe forgiveness is the best form of love in any relationship. It takes a strong person to say they’re sorry and an even stronger person to forgive.” — Yolanda Hadid

“Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.” ― Mark Twain

“Forgiveness is the remission of sins. For it is by this that what has been lost, and was found, is saved from being lost again.” — Saint Augustine

“Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.” — Paul Lewis Boese

 “Forgiveness is not always easy. At times, it feels more painful than the wound we suffered, to forgive the one that inflicted it. And yet, there is no peace without forgiveness.” — Marianne Williamson

“Forgiveness is a strange thing. It can sometimes be easier to forgive our enemies than our friends. It can be hardest of all to forgive people we love.” — Fred Rogers

 “Forgiveness is healing… especially forgiving yourself.” — Alyson Noel

“Anger makes you smaller, while forgiveness forces you to grow beyond what you were.” — Cherie Carter-Scott

“Forgiveness is a reflection of loving yourself enough to move on.” — Dr Steve Maraboli

“Forgiving isn’t something you do for someone else. It’s something you do for yourself. It’s saying, ‘You’re not important enough to have a stranglehold on me.’ It’s saying, ‘You don’t get to trap me in the past. I am worthy of a future.” — Jodi Picoult

“Forgiveness is above all a personal choice, a decision of the heart to go against natural instinct to pay back evil with evil.” — Pope John Paul II

“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” ― Lewis B. Swedes

 “Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” — Buddha

“It’s not an easy journey, to get to a place where you forgive people. But it is such a powerful place because it frees you.” — Tyler Perry

 “How unhappy is he who cannot forgive himself.” Pub Lilius Syros

“To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you.” ― C.S. Lewis

“Dumbledore says people find it far easier to forgive others for being wrong than being right.” ― J.K. Rowling

“I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine.” ― Jane Austen

“Any fool knows men and women think differently at times, but the biggest difference is this. Men forget, but never forgive; women forgive, but never forget.” ― Robert Jordan

“Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart.” ― Corrie Ten Boom

“Last night I lost the world, and gained the universe.” ― C. JoyBell C.

“Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.” ― Mark Twain

“Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.” ― Nelson Mandela

“Throughout life people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad. Let God deal with the things they do, cause hate in your heart will consume you too.” ― Will Smith

“I think that if God forgives us we must forgive ourselves. Otherwise, it is almost like setting up ourselves as a higher tribunal than Him.” ― C.S. Lewis

“To be wronged is nothing, unless you continue to remember it.” ― Confucius

“Forgiveness has nothing to do with absolving a criminal of his crime. It has everything to do with relieving oneself of the burden of being a victim–letting go of the pain and transforming oneself from victim to survivor.” ― C.R. Strahan

“We are not perfect, forgive others as you would want to be forgiven.”  ― Catherine Pulsipher

“Forgiveness is for you – not the other person. It’s something you do inside yourself that you feel in your body and heart that releases you from your past and frees you to live life fully.”  ― Barbara J Hunt

“Jesus died so we humans can find mercy and forgiveness.”  ― Lee Summer

“The forgiveness of sins extended to Christians by God is a wonderful blessing but it does not give one a license to sin.”  ― John Buttrick

“We should never be surprised when God keeps His word to forgive those who confess their sins.”  ― R. C. Sproul

“There are always people who can’t forgive an able man for differing from them.”  ― George Eliot

“Because I make mistakes, I know others do too. I’ve found when I give forgiveness, it’s me – not the other person who benefits.” ― Ellen Miller

“The most important thing that I learned in growing up is that forgiveness is something that, when you do it, you free yourself to move on.”  ― Tyler Perry

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