Taking On the Forgiveness Challenge

Janet Fouts emailed me last week asking for a photo of Soleil for Archbishop Tutu’s #ForgivenessChallenge. Janet said it would be great if I could take on the Challenge, but the photo alone would be enough.

After digging into the details I decided to participate. The contest asks me to post a photo for four weeks with the hashtag #ForgivenessChallenge, each one depicting a forgiveness exercise.

Why do it? See, I struggle with forgiveness, and wrote about it last November. Perhaps this is my greatness struggle. I really have a hard time letting people off the hook when I perceive they have wronged me.

Yet I know by failing to forgive others, I end up punishing and limiting myself more than anything. And it’s painful to carry around garbage. I really do see these things as spiritual garbage weighing myself and others down.

Plus, how can I have my kid be a part of this, and not take the challenge myself? It seems hypocritical to me.

Knowing these things, I have decided to work on forgiveness through the Challenge. I bought Archbishop Tutu’s new book The Book of Forgiving, and intend to read it over the weekend.

We’ll see where the exercises take me. Here are the four tasks and my first entry in case you are interested.

Week 1: Are you ready to forgive?
Hold a printed or hand written sign, create a graphic, take a photo that represents something you feel expresses forgiveness.


The Silliness of Forgiveness #forgivenesschallenge: Soleil reminds me that forgiving brings joy back into our hearts.

Week 2: I/we forgive ______
Show us that you forgive. Examples might be a family, a single person, people hugging in the universal gesture of love and forgiveness.

Week 3: Please forgive me for_______
We have all done things we regret. What have you done that you feel you need to be forgiven for? Here’s your chance. Post a photo that expresses your need to be forgiven.

Week 4: Show us how you forgive
We forgive to begin to heal ourselves. How can you show forgiveness in action?

How do you forgive?


  • I have to say Geoff, the book changed the way I look at how I think about forgiving. It’s not for the person you forgive but for you. The real challenge is embedded in the 30 day learning program. An email a day to walk you through the “four-fold path to forgiving”. Desmond Tutu is really quite amazing to work with, as is his Daughter Mpho. I’m thankful to be able to work on this project.

    • I look forward to this. I really feel like I need it right now, based on my response to the campaign. Thank you!

  • Thank you for your first week’s post, Geoff. Sometimes forgiveness feels like a heavy, arduous task but you and Soleil remind me that it doesn’t need to be.

  • I have to say He, the guide modified the way I look at how I think about flexible. It’s not for the individual you absolve but for you. The actual task is included in the 30 day studying system. An e-mail a day simply to move you through the “four-fold direction to forgiving”. Desmond Tutu is really quite awesome to perform with, as is his Little girl Mpho. I’m grateful to be able to perform on this venture.


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