The key to living free is to forgive those who trespass against you. God commands us to forgive, but it requires a conscious choice to do so. It is not a feeling, but an action. Are you willing to surrender embedded memories of shame, pain, and suffering to God?
You do not have to live in the past with a heart full of bitterness and guilt. The longer you carry resentment, the heavier it becomes. Isn’t it time to accept reality and move forward? Are you willing to open old wounds and let God show you the offending person as He sees them? Through His eyes of compassion and grace, you may just get a better understanding of why an individual acts the way they do.
Forgiveness is a prominent theme throughout the Bible. Unforgiveness and self-righteousness will block restoration. The Bible has over 101 verses referencing the action forgive.
For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. Matthew 6:14-15
Forgiving someone does not mean that what they did was ok. Instead, it is about setting your heart free from the chains of unforgiveness. Forgive them even if they are not sorry. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
Most times, forgiveness is a slow process. We see this in The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant: Matthew 18:21-22
Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.”
Jesus knows that forgiveness is not easy. It is not a one-time choice to be made and then we automatically live in a state of forgiveness. While that may sound great, forgiveness may require a lifetime of continuous forgiving.
We forgive out of obedience to the Lord. Our reward is called freedom.
And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. Mark 11:25
Thank you, Lord, for forgiving me for any resentment and bitterness I hold against another. Where there has been an injustice, I choose to let you be Judge. I put my trust in you. Your power and grace are at work in me.
Are you holding unforgiveness in your heart? Are you willing to lay down your unforgiveness to receive freedom?
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