Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. Colossians 3:13 NIV
Have you ever suffered a deep wound that you thought you would never recover from? Recently I found myself in this position, a position that I never imagined I could ever be in. It shook me to my core and I will carry the scars with me.
But they are just that – scars. Because I have been healed by God’s grace.
When this wound was dealt I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t think. All I could do was cry inaudible cries unto God. And in the days that followed I found myself talking to God saying ‘Lord, how can I ever forgive. I know I must forgive for Your word commands it and I don’t want the devil to use this to make me bitter and to destroy my relationship with You but how can I forgive this, it is unforgivable’.
How do you get to that place where you are willing to forgive, where you want to forgive? And then how do you follow through and forgive?
God taught me how to forgive through a combination of three things:
May I never lose the wonder, oh, the wonder of Your mercy.
God’s mercy as endless as the sea, God’s mercy which forgive me all my iniquities, God’s mercy which caused Him to give his best, to give His Son, God’s mercy which forgave those who betrayed Christ, who shouted crucify, who plotted for years to bring about the death of Christ, God’s mercy is available to all.
Who was I to condemn someone who was not outside of God’s reach? If this individual turned to God He in His faithfulness would forgive and cast their sin into the sea of His forgetfulness. How can I call myself a follower of Christ and not forgive.
I consciously made a decision to forgive. I said ‘God, I want to forgive but God I am human and I need Your help to see this through, help me to forgive.’
That decision changed everything. I was able to breathe. It didn’t happen overnight but I felt God’s presence and help. And as the days went by, I daily choose to forgive.
It’s not easy to forgive and I found that I needed to consciously choose each day to forgive or I started to slip back into resentment. But if you have found yourself in a situation that appears from the human perspective to be unforgivable – choose to forgive. Don’t let unforgiveness steal your joy in Christ. Make a conscious decision to forgive and ask God to help you. Make this decision on a daily basis until suddenly you realize that you have forgiven, that you no longer carry resentment or bitterness in your heart. That you can look at the individual who caused your heartache and see them as Christ sees them, with God’s love.
Lord, thank You for your mercy. Thank You for forgiving me. Help me to follow Your example and to forgive those who have caused me pain. I want to forgive; I don’t want anything to hinder my relationship with You. Help me make that conscious decision, to stick with it and to know Your strength and love following through me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.