That is the basic and profound message of the act of forgiving. The other is cruel to me. This will not take away my humanity. I will strive to love that person nonetheless. The other is persecuting me, depriving me of my rights, insulting and belittling me. This will not stop me from loving the other, from seeing the other’s humanity, from offering her a better way. The other oppresses me with his power. He dominates me and treats me as being far less than him. I will not do the same back to him. Instead, I will try to love and not lose my humanity in the process, nor will I lose the perspective of her full humanity.
Yes, I will protect myself by not reconciling as he exercises cruelty or persecution or oppression. I will bring forgiveness alongside justice and never give up striving for fairness. Throughout this struggle, I will continue to love because to forgive on its highest level is to love. Love is stronger than cruelty, persecution, and oppression.