Sunday, March 12, 2017

Experience the Grace to Forgive Yourself and Others

Most Christians acknowledge that forgiveness is not optional and they know they need to forgive others even as they are forgiven. But sometimes the wound of past hurts is so deep, and despite attempts to forgive and let go, the pain lingers. So underneath we still nurse resentment and bitterness.

Sometimes we feel that it is impossible to get past the pain, but God will help us to move past the offense and find freedom in forgiveness. When we forgive, we free ourselves from the bondage resentment and bitterness, to gain new perspectives, grow, and be happy.

In a sense, we also release the person who hurt us from the prison of unforgiveness. This doesn't mean that we condone or agree with the wrong that was done. But we are obedient to the instructions in God's Word to forgive, and we draw from the divine resource that God gives through his Holy Ghost to truly forgive those who hurt us.

We must also take the decision to forgive ourselves past mistakes. Having repented, God forgives, and the Scriptures say he remembers our sins no more. It’s time to choose to let go and be happy.

We need to forgive our brothers and sisters if we are to build healthy relationships. When unforgiveness is allowed to linger we hurt twice - first by the offender and secondly by the bitterness that could affect our spiritual, physical and emotional health.

If there is unforgiveness, let us ask the Holy Spirit to help us to deal with the pain, and give us the strength to let go. Then we need to start praying earnestly for a specific need that the person has, and thanking God for the release that comes through breaking the cycle of offence.

In the YouTube video, Christian author, Dr Andrew Farley explains that forgiveness is not a feeling nor is it forgetting. He points out that forgiving is recognising the pain but choosing to release the person who hurt you.

Unforgiveness can block our happiness. When we hold on to past wrongs that people have done, this keeps the pain and hurt constantly before us and leads to intense unhappiness. Forgiveness not only benefit others but it also releases us to greater fellowship with God and a more satisfying life.

Focus Verses: "Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you" (Ephesians 4:31-32, NIV).

Focus Questions: What steps will you take today to forgive and release a brother or sister that wronged you?

Let Us Pray: “Thank you that you forgive me of my sins. Today, I choose to forgive the people who hurt me. I forgive and release -------. Thank you for your blessings on him/her. [Take time to list the people you are forgiving and what they did]. I let go of past hurts and pains as I forgive others and myself. In Jesus' Name I pray. Amen.”

No comments:

Post a Comment