Monday, May 31, 2010

Forgiveness...easier said than done!

I've recently had a conversation with someone about forgiveness, and I thought I'd share on here in case someone is reading this and needs some encouragement on this subject.

The Bible says we should forgive those who mistreat us to protect ourselves; it’s not for the benefit of those who mistreated us. Whether or not the person asks for forgiveness or even feels sorry for what they did, forgiving will release you from the anger, resentment, hatred, and bitterness and then you will be able to move on and heal from the situation. Holding on to these feelings also gives the devil an easy way into your heart to cause even more pain. You may not understand right now why you went through what you did; but have faith that you can move on from it.

It’s easy to blame God for allowing this to happen. Remember, God gave people free will to make their own decisions, people have to choose to live their lives according to God's will, He cannot make that decision for us. We cannot blame God for the sins of imperfect people and the things people do to us…that was that person’s mistake. God can help you overcome and move on from it, though.

Forgiveness does not mean you are giving a reason for the hurtful act or defending the person who hurt you, and it does not mean that God is forgiving them for their actions…only that person can ask for that. Nothing can change the past, but you can do something about the present and your future happiness. Forgiveness means you are simply allowing God to take your pain and anger, and realizing it is not your job to judge that person. Forgiveness will help your precious heart heal and move on.

If you’re NOT ready to forgive you can say this prayer:
"God, please help me get to the point of being willing to forgive those who have wronged me. Please give me the desire and ability to forgive. Thank you, God. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen."

When you DO feel ready to forgive, you can pray something like this:
“God, I confess that I have not forgiven as You have commanded me to. With Your help, I now forgive these people: _______ (list names and what they did to you). I confess my pride and judgment of those people. Please help me to thoroughly entrust these people and the wrongs they caused me into Your hands. I pray that Your will be done in my life and in their lives. Please help me to no longer think on those wrongs, but instead to focus my thoughts on You. I invite You, Lord, into any painful memories I have concerning what was done. Please heal my emotional wounds. Thank you, Father! In the name of Jesus Christ I pray, Amen.”

What the Bible says about forgiveness…

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."
- Matthew 11:28

“Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”
- Colossians 3:13

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.”
- Luke 6:37

I would love for you to share your thoughts on this subject as well...

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