Saturday, April 23, 2022

The Power of Forgiveness

By: Melanie Moore

I once saw a sign that said "Refusing to forgive someone is like drinking poison... and then hoping your enemy will die." How many of us are living out this sad truth in our lives?

Forgiveness is hard. It sounds so easy, but in reality, forgiving someone who has wronged us deeply can be one of the hardest things we ever do. There have been unspeakable acts done to so many people that forgiveness can seem impossible to grasp in these situations.

For me, even a seemingly minor offense can challenge my heart in the area of forgiveness. My heart has a tendency to want to build a protective barrier and hold on to a grudge as a "safety net" against future hurt.

We can all probably list off the top of our heads those who have wronged us in some way -- perhaps deceived us, betrayed us, spread untruths about us, and who we generally have a very hard time forgiving for the things they have done to us. 

We read in the Bible that we should pray for our enemies, but the only prayer we can muster up is that something terrible would happen to them. I don't think that is the type of prayer God had in mind...

How can we ever truly forgive and love someone who has hurt us so deeply? 

The only way we can ever truly forgive someone who has hurt us is through the power of Christ living within us. We can pray and ask God to make us an instrument of His forgiveness. The forgiveness may not feel like it is coming from our hearts, but when we choose to forgive someone, we surrender control of the situation to God. Only He can work in all of our hearts, and enable us to let go of any lingering bitterness in our hearts. 

When we remember Christ's sacrifice on the cross to forgive us from our sins, how could we ever hold on to unforgiveness in our hearts toward others? When we remember our own humanity, it enables us to humbly accept that the same mercy and grace God extends to us is also extended to those who hurt us.

Be kind and compassionate to one another,
forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
Ephesians 4:32

What seeds of bitterness may linger in your heart? I encourage each of us to take some time to determine whether there are any grudges that we're holding on to today. Let's trust God with our hearts and ask him to make us an instrument of His forgiveness. 

1 comment:

  1. Melanie, I can so relate. I have a habit of building walls and find it difficult to knock them down. I do have to say as I get older and seek God in the everyday, it has become easier to forgive, sometimes it takes me time and a lot of prayer. But I am able to finally come to forgiveness. Thank you so much for sharing this blessed message.


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