Have you ever been hurt by anyone? Nearly everyone one of us has been hurt by something that someone has said or done to us. When someone hurts us, it causes us pain that many times leaves a lasting wound. The injury we receive, many times turns into resentment, anger, and bitterness. God knows that but if we do not forgive, we will be the one that will be paying in the end. When we learn to honestly forgive, the end result is we are embraced with hope, thanks, and joy. These feelings and emotions are the results of forgiveness working in our hearts.
Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself, by deciding to let go of our bitterness, resentment and anger. Forgiveness can even lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and compassion for the one who hurt us. When we forgive it does not mean that we deny the other person’s responsibility for hurting us, and it certainly doesn’t make light of the wrong that occurred in our life. We can forgive the person that hurt us without excusing the act that caused us the pain. Forgiveness brings a kind of peace and joy that enables us to go on with life, and live it more abundantly. The person who hurt you may not deserve to be forgiven, but we also didn’t deserve God’s forgiveness in the gift of Jesus Christ.
Jesus taught us in the Lord’s Prayer to ask God to “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive them that trespass against us”.
Forgiveness; what a word, what an action. It is the very breath of God….. Forgiveness. Everything we are in Christ is based on forgiveness. There are a lot of words used to describe the word forgive; stop blaming, excuse, absolve, justify, free, pardon, bear no malice towards, not hold something against, understand, acquit, remit, let off, exonerate, absolve, bury the hatchet, let bygones be bygones, the list goes on and on.
So it is with forgiveness, that love is the basis of true forgiveness. Any time love is given or received, there is a tremendous blessing released; love holds, love forgives, love heals, love comforts, love restores, love honors, and true love forgives. God is trying to teach us that in forgiving, we receive more than we give.
When we do not forgive, we pay the price by carrying that anger and bitterness into every new relationship and experience in our lives. A lack of forgiveness will so engulf our lives that we cannot enjoy the present good things in our life. As a result we will ultimately lose valuable and enriching relationships with others.
We must be committed to forgiveness if we are to be commitment to a positive process of change. We must recognize the power of forgiveness and its value in our lives. We must not continually see ourselves as victims. This in turn releases the power of forgiveness and removes the power the offending person and/or situation we have had in our life. Forgiveness allows us to no longer be defined by how we’ve been hurt. In the process of forgiving we find healing, compassion and understanding.
Forgiveness can and will change our lives —and brings us happiness, emotional and spiritual healing. Forgiveness removes the ability the situation which hurt us in the first place to affect our life.
A lack of forgiveness is poison to our lives. Resentment, anger and bitterness are a poison in your soul that eats at you from the inside out.
If we have been hurt and wounded by someone, and we cannot forgive, that forgiveness can cause us to miss the grace of God. How could that happen you ask? God’s Word tells us in Hebrews 12:15
See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to because trouble and defile many.”
God’s grace and our bitterness cannot coexist in the same heart. Either God’s grace will push out your bitterness, or your bitterness will push out God’s grace.
If the truth be told, we don’t hold a grudge – a grudge holds us. The poison in our soul doesn’t hurt the person we are holding resentment against but it kills us. It’s a huge, heavy burden we carry with us everywhere you go.
And hard or bitter feelings toward others ends up “causing trouble” and “defiling many, and it spreads out to other people; people who don’t deserve it. It will poison your relationships, friendships, marriages, children, and associates.
There is an answer in God’s Word. There is a way to rescue your heart and emotions. It is called forgiveness.
Ephesians tells us to “get rid of all bitterness…be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you”.
We have been forgiven, now we become the forgiver. We can store resentment and bitterness and let it become poison in our soul; a poison that will cripple or destroy us. Jesus Christ’s love and the power of forgiveness, is our antidote. Do yourself a favor, and set yourself free, so you can be happy. Have the peace and joy of the Lord Jesus in your life. Forgive.