“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)
One of the most difficult things to do in life is to forgive. What’s more difficult is to forgive this person who offended you. You are the victim of circumstance! But the word tells us to “forgive as the Lord forgave you”.
When we feel like we have been wronged, our fleshly human nature kicks in and the first thing we want to do is connive and scheme to get back at the offender. As anger and resentment continues to rise, we allow these negative emotions to dictate our thoughts and the actions that come behind it. If we react too quickly, consequences of those actions can have a deep rippling effect. The Lord also says, “vengeance is mine”.
We must stabilize those human natural feelings to seek vengeance and instead, forgive and release the person from the liability of the injustice or transgression. Forgiveness sets you free! Unforgiveness can be self-destructive! Conniving thoughts and schemes can bind your spirit and keep you emotionally unhealthy.
Forgiving the offender does not relieve them of their wrongdoings and injustice to you. They must answer to God for themselves about their own transgressions.
Forgive yourself – before you can forgive others, you must learn how to forgive yourself for your actions and thoughts of vengeance. Think about how you will handle the situation. Let God take care of the offender. As hard as it may be, we must pray and ask God to help heal the hurt and the negative feelings; replacing them with values and principles that are in alignment with His word.
Prayer is everything. Forgiveness is healing. When we forgive, we release ourselves to spiritual restoration. Whether you decide to continue or dissolve the relationship, you’ve done your part, now let God do the rest. Turn the page to a new chapter. Forget the past. Let go of the anger, blame and guilt. Forgive, let go, move on!
God gives us grace to forgive just as we have been forgiven. Hebrews 12:14 states that we should make every effort to follow peace with all men.