Forgiveness is one of the most powerful, least understood and most underused concept taught in the Bible. Wow, Satan is so diabolically deceitful.
Jesus gives us all a startling warning about not forgiving others: if we refuse to forgive others, God will also refuse to forgive us. Now we know God does forgive us even though there is no way we can perfectly and totally forgive all those who have transgressed us. But think about it – how long are you willing to go without the forgiveness of God? Great sinners are transformed, today and eternally, into exceptional Christians, all because of the power of forgiveness … the gift of forgiveness.
You see, when someone hurts us, our pride is wounded. We feel various pains, some inflicted on us and some from past wounds, that we blame on the other person. We have a great need to see that person experience hurt and pain to make the “score” even. But we then become dependent on seeing our attacker experience pain, and we aren’t “healed” unless they do. Unknowingly, that gives the other person ongoing control and power over us. They can always interfere with and control the timeline of their apology, experiencing consequences, or receiving justice for their offenses.
Give the gift of forgiveness to others, and especially to yourself. Free your offender and yourself. Allow God to come heal and teach you both how to grow the Mind of Christ.
Jesus modeled forgiveness perfectly for us. Think of all those whom Jesus forgave: the woman caught in adultery, Peter who denied he knew Jesus, the criminal on the cross … and those who crucified Him. Giving forgiveness brings joy and peace … withholding forgiveness brings bitterness, victimization, the need see the offender to suffer and experience revenge.
Today, don’t let your pride get in the way of forgiving others. If you are withholding forgiveness, you are missing a wonderful opportunity to experience joy … and spread it to others. Make your joy grow today and gain the must-have forgiveness of your Lord for your sins. Remember, forgiveness is a gift, not for others, but really for you, and will be very pleasing to God. Your decision, choose well.
Dear Father, thanks be to You, Lord, for Your incredible gift of forgiveness. Where would I be without it … buried under a ton of sin and shame. I am so quick to ask for Your Forgiveness, Lord … but so slow to forgive others. Help me remember that forgiving others lifts a heavy burden off me … and places me back under the grace of Your forgiveness. I thank You, Lord, for the many examples of forgiveness demonstrated by Your Son Jesus. I seek to forgive as Jesus forgave … I seek the mind of Christ. Lord, help me spread Your message about forgiveness. I pray this through Jesus Christ who paid the ultimate price so that my sins may be forgiven; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.
Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.