I will be the first to say I’m sorry, seek forgiveness,
and offer forgiveness even when it’s hard.
Psalm 38:18 (NLT)
But I confess my sins;
I am deeply sorry for what I have done.
James 5:16 (NLT)
Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.
The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.
Luke 17:4 (NLT)
Even if that person wrongs you seven times a day and each time turns again and asks forgiveness, you must forgive.
Lord God, I want to be quick to confess my sins to you. Please cultivate in me a heart that never hardens, so that I may always be deeply sorry for what I have done wrong in your eyes. Lord, crush my pride so that I am willing to confess my sins to you and also those I can trust with my heart.
God, I thank you that honest confession leads to healing.
Thank you that the earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. Yes, Lord, I hope to see those results in my own life!
Lord, it’s not easy to walk in forgiveness with those who have sinned against me. But you request that offering forgiveness, even seven times a day, to the one who has offended me is a must. Oh Lord, really? It’s so hard. Please enable me to be a person who forgives quickly and often.
In the Strong Name of Jesus, Amen.
My youngest daughter had just finished helping my middle daughter study for her Chemistry test by quizzing her on her flash cards. When all was said and done, she confessed, “Chemistry is so hard. I don’t think it will make sense to me even when I’m in your class daddy.” Yes, my kiddos have the blessing of living with their Chemistry teacher. My husband’s response to my daughter took me by surprise.
“It’s only hard because you can’t see it.”
She pressed him, “What do you mean you can’t see it?”
“Well,” he said, “You can’t see the why . . . the process of getting to the answer is abstract.”
How true, not only about Chemistry but also about forgiveness.
In the case of forgiveness, we may never see the outcome clearly. All the preceding steps may be also obscure, however, the fruit is always visible. There’s a hurt inflicted, a careless grazing of pain against the heart, or maybe an outright sin. Regardless of the offense, a wound is caused and it takes on a power all it’s own, as it becomes infected and attempts to destroy the life of its victim.
Unforgiveness leaves the most obvious marks on a person’s life.
Have you noticed the way unforgiveness manifests in bitterness and resentment, anger and a critical spirit? Have you seen the way unforgiveness causes isolation and despair, depression and anxiety? Or the way it becomes the source of feeling defeated and defensive?
Unforgiveness makes a mess of our lives, whether it’s the guilt we carry over our own offenses or the wound caused by another that we fail to have Him treat.
Like a chemist, we need to be aware of elements involved. Yes, we need to own our stuff . . . our hurt as well as our sin, as we talked about in principle #11. The first step always has to be in naming the pain before God, and then seeking His truth for dealing with our hurt. The second step is simple obedience. God says to seek forgiveness from Him when we’ve sinned. Could it be any plainer? And the third step is choosing to forgive those who have sinned against us, regardless of their willingness to receive it.
When we forgive, we’re setting the offender free for God to respond with justice and mercy.
Could our own response be better than that? NO! And I speak as one with experience. Oh yes, I know this dance of forgiveness well, as I’ve walked this road, my friend.
In moving through the process of forgiveness with the Lord, we get to live set free from guilt and shame, released from pain and hurt.
Forgiveness like a feather floating towards the ground, gracefully landing wherever the wind carries it to. It’s unhindered. Burdened-less. Untethered. And simply free.
Yes, forgiveness is the secret to living a life of freedom.
Is it time for you to be set free today, simply by obeying God in this journey of forgiveness?
If walking through this process of forgiveness feels daunting, you might just need to step back and start at the beginning by unpacking your story, pinpointing the hurt, and moving forward with the Lord. The Infuse Course will actually help you do that one step at a time and at your own pace.
To continue this journey of living brave and inviting the next generation to join you in the journey, get a copy of Brave Together: A Conversation Starter for Cultivating Biblical Mentoring Relationships.
Available in paperback on Amazon or click the button to purchase the downloadable PDF version.
[purchase_link id=”29428″ text=”Add to Cart” style=”button” color=”dark-gray”]