Thursday, June 28, 2012

Forgiving Others Even When It's Hard

I read a news story this morning (I'll spare you the details) that made me consider how I handle forgiving others in my life. There have been people who have wronged me, and forgiving them has been hard, sometimes very hard.  Holding on to unforgiveness though is not Biblical.

  • Forgiveness is not easy and it takes time. In Matthew 18:22 Jesus tells the disciples we need to forgive a person 490 times!  This to me connotates that forgiveness is A, a process, and B, will not happen overnight.  In fact if you look at forgiveness this way if you pray once a day asking God to help you forgive someone who truly grieved you it will take well over a year before you could say you've truly forgiven them.
  • Unforgiveness in your heart  is like drinking poison and expecting the people who hurt you to die.  God does not want bitterness to grow in our hearts.  (Ephesians 4:31)  It eats away at our joy and can literally take years off of our life
  • When we hold on to unforgiveness we place ourselves in a position of control and superiority over those who wronged us.  Not forgiving someone is like mentally saying, "YOU OWE ME.  I will not forgive you until you have fulfilled this debt." This type of mentality seeks to gain control over the situation.  Unforgiveness also says, "What you did was so wrong, you don't deserve my grace."  The fact of the matter is no one person on this planet is superior to another.  god places all humans into the same category, sinner. (Romans 3:23) God does speak harshly towards some sins (harming a child for example) but we are all equally in need of God's Grace.
  • No offense is greater than killing the perfect Son of God.  You and I are guilty of killing God's son, bear with me here. Our sin was so great and grievous to a perfect God, that His very son had to be sent to die so that we might find forgiveness.  Christ died for us while we were still sinners, He died so that we could know salvation.  You and I require God's grace because our sin is that horrible.  No matter what someone did that seems unforgivable, remember you need Grace too, and God extends it to you if you would only accept.
  • We must forgive others because Christ forgave us. (Ephesians 4:32) It would be easy to nurse wounds sometimes rather than forgive, but Christ forgave us, therefore we must forgive others.
  • God requires us to forgive others. (Matthew 6:14-15) Part of understanding God's grace is accepting the fact that it is Christ's work that let's us attain salvation. It has nothing to do with how good of a person we are, it has everything to do with God's sacrifice.  We could do as many good things as Mother Theresa, but it wouldn't make us any better than the people that we need to forgive.
  • God will cleanse us from our sins and forgive us if we ask. 1 John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. "  We all need salvation, and God promises to always forgive.
Have I missed any scriptures or points? Leave a comment with your (kind) thoughts.

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  1. It's taken me a while to learn forgiveness. Bitterness is detrimental to the one who holds it. It affects you both physically and mentally. May God said to forgive 70 x 7 because it takes us that many times (and more) to learn to fully and completely forgive?

  2. Just heard a tremendous message on forgivness at camp last week. Sometimes when we are wronged we wait for an apology. Or a forgive me! It may never come ~ We need to forgive whether they ask or not. I wish everyone could have heard that sermon.

  3. This has also been on my mind lately. Matter-of-face I just did a post on it also.


  4. Hey, friend! Thanks for linking up with Moms Against Manic Mondays! :)

    "Father forgive them for they know not what they do..." -most powerful prayer ever prayed. Thank you for sharing the Truth today with such humility and grace. <3

    With love,


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