Forgiveness is often tough, isn’t it? When you forgive someone who has hurt you, it may feel like you are letting the other person off the hook. (You aren’t.)What’s worse than not forgiving someone? Holding on to unforgiveness! Click & Tweet!
Dr. David Jeremiah says, “Someone has described unforgiveness as the accumulation of unexpressed anger Because it is denied, it can often be ignored, while all the time it is building and growing like an invisible tumor.”
Unforgiveness becomes bitterness. You don’t want bitterness to take root: it entangles you and suffocates you like a giant boa constrictor. The apostle Paul encouraged:
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:31-32, ESV)
“Forgiveness is not a method to be learned as much as a truth to be lived,” writes Nancy Leigh DeMoss in Choosing Forgiveness, Your Journey to Freedom (Moody Publishers, 2008).
Unfaithful spouses. Gossiping friends. Wayward kids. Nasty neighbors. Unfair teacher, employers, coworkers. This world gives you and me many opportunities to grant forgiveness. Did you know many women who seek counseling also need to extend and accept forgiveness? It’s a huge issue.
If you’ve lived in unforgiveness — a dark, uncomfortable place where you’ve hidden your heart — isn’t it time to step into light and experience freedom through Christ?
12 Things to You Must Know
1. Forgiveness is both a choice and a process.
2. Make a decision to give up anger.
3. Pray to be made willing to forgive.
4. Feel your feelings in a safe place, with a safe person.
5. To say, “I forgive,” but never feel your pain denies the truth.
6. To feel your pain, anger, and sadness but never choose forgiveness hurts you.
7. Ask for grace both to feel and to forgive.
8. Read Jesus’ words on forgiveness. To get you started, check out Matthew 9:2, Matthew 12:31, Mark 3:29, Luke 23:34, John 20:23,
9. To forgive is not to condone
10. To forgive is not to excuse.
11. To forgive doesn’t mean you don’t matter.
12. Trust God for justice.
When you forgive, you let go of your supposed right to get even. Why not let go of the hurt after you share your pain with Jesus. . .and be free? Click & Tweet!
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Sharing Hope with Your Heart,