Forgiveness: It's for You...Not for Them! by Tonya Davis
Forgiveness has amazing power!It is God's way of putting an end to bitterness, resentment, and hostility. Forgiveness is freedom from anger and a personal
state of bondage that comes from harboring anger.
Why is forgiveness difficult? It is difficult because it is unselfish.Maybe you simply don't want to forgive, or you believe the other person should initiate reconciliation, or you're "stuck" on past hurts and bad experiences.Maybe you don't want to appear weak, be misunderstood, or be rejected. Whatever the case, we must be willing to forgive those who sin against us, because God has forgiven each of us of so much (Matt.18:23-35).
Scripture tells us that forgiveness is mandatory: "For if you forgive men when they sin. against you, yow heavenly Fat/'}(tr will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive yow sins" (Matt. 6:14-15).
There are a few things we can do when working toward forgiveness:
1) Remember that God has totally forgiven you. Your entire life has been forgiven, not because you deserve it, but because of His awesome grace.
2) Recognize that unforgiveness is sin. It is simply a violation of biblical principles.
3) Get rid of the anger.
Make a conscious decision to let it go. We must forget what is behind, and press toward what is ahead" (Phil. 3:14). Since Scripture clearly teaches forgiveness, we must
accept and agree with His Word, pray, and have patience.
You'll know you have forgiven when:
1) Compassion overrides the harsh emotions towards others.
2) You've accepted others without bitterness, even if they never change; instead,you'll seek understanding of their actions.
3) You'll thank God for allowing the difficult experience to teach you more about His awesome grace.
We don't have to hold onto unforgiveness, bitterness, and resentment.We can escape the bondage that traps those who refuse to show mercy.When the Holy Spirit reminds you of those you need to forgive, don't ignore His voice.
Tell us what's on your Heart.
Remember, it is your story that helps others overcome the enemy. What you share has the potential to not only impact someone's life, but their eternity.
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