Forgive or don’t forgive… I had to choose.
(The Power of Forgiveness – Part 1)
When I was a little girl, I took great pride in holding a grudge and hating those who wronged me. In fact, it was my ‘policy’ to never forgive. I made it my business to get you back, even if it took years. It’s a good thing that God chased me down with His love. He has taught me some priceless lessons on forgiveness, and I’m sure I have a lot more of them to learn. Like you, I get plenty of opportunities everyday to practice extending mercy; you know, giving someone another chance. I began the New Year with a brand new lesson…
I started my New Year being mad at my dearest friend, my husband, on New Year’s evening. After being married for more than thirty years, you would think that I would have grown accustomed to my husband’s frankness. Apparently I haven’t, because he said one little sentence and my feelings were torn to pieces. Of course, it wasn’t just the sentence, but the sentence was the ‘icing on the cake.’ I’m sure if you asked my husband, he would agree that it’s those who are closest to us that give us the most chances to practice walking in love. (smiles)
Anyway, I talked to God about the incident and asked Him to show me how to forgive one more time, because, for the life of me, I couldn’t figure it out! I did not want the sun to go down on my anger. I did not want to open the door of my heart to the enemy (Ephesians 4:26-27). So I tried to concentrate on what the Word says about forgiveness. I remembered all the times that I let God down and yet He continues to love and forgive me. That helped a little bit. It enabled me to speak to my hubby without being sarcastic. I could hold a conversation, although I’m sure he heard the reserve in my voice. I was trying my best to watch whatever I said. I didn’t want my pain and confusion to cause me to explode and say something that would hurt his feelings or damage our relationship.
The Holy Spirit even reminded me that just as Jesus had died for my sins, He died for my husband’s as well. So who was I to continue being mad at him? If I didn’t forgive my spouse, then I would be saying that Jesus’ blood wasn’t powerful enough to handle what I considered to be wrong on my husband’s part. Well, that revelation helped me to keep working on forgiveness.
I’ll tell you more on tomorrow. Until then, I pray that you will choose to forgive the people in your life. There will always be opportunities to forgive and be free, since no one is perfect, including you and me. I hope that you will use each instance to demonstrate the power of love through forgiveness.
Until tomorrow… etj3!
Question: Who pushes your button and challenges you to forgive?
Scriptures that pertain to today’s post are:
Matthew 6:11-12 1 Give us today our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
Matthew 6:15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Matthew 9:6 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.”
Matthew 12:31 And so I tell you, every kind of sin and slander can be forgiven, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.
Matthew 18:21-35 The parable of the unmerciful servant
© 2009 God’s Perspective Publishing
This post has been republished from the archives in case you missed it. You don’t want to miss part 2 of this post.