Have you ever been in a situation where you have been so disappointed by people that you begin to lose trust in humanity? When you have had a misunderstanding with someone and you just can’t bring yourself to admit that you’re wrong? Or when you are so deeply wronged that the thought of forgiving is becoming hard to comprehend?
When my wallet got stolen recently, I was that person. I still recall the anger, frustration and regret I felt when it happened. I was having a mini catch-up with a friend and a lady sat opposite to me used the opportunity to take my wallet. The moment I realised, I felt violated. I was mad. Initially my frustrations were with the woman that stole from me. Soon, I was mad at the world.
For an entire week, it was unbearable for me to let the feelings from the incident go. Although, I knew I could get my items replaced, the utter injustice was constantly on my mind. I guess it was because it was hard to forgive her, but most importantly, I just didn’t think she deserved my forgiveness.
We have probably all felt a similar inner rage. Some of you reading might even be feeling in it now. For you, it might not be a pickpocketer that you have found hard to forgive. It might be that “friend” that you had a misunderstanding with and haven’t spoken to throughout this year; because you are still rehashing past scenarios. Or it might be that person you once shared an intimate relationship with and things didn’t go the way you intended. Either way, you keep holding on to the small fragments of the relationship, not willing to let it go and move on. Maybe the hurt lies closer to home. Your parents could have wronged you with their actions or their absence and although you’re older now, you hold on to that resentment, still feeling bitter about it, after all they should have treated you better.
…we have all felt like that at one point or the other, justifying why are right to hold onto our pain, getting weighed down by the grudge we’re holding…
In Matthew 6:14-15, Jesus tells us to forgive because we have been forgiven.
“ For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins”.
How do we then forgive?
Offering forgiveness will be always easier said than done if we because we decide to live in our feelings holding on to the wrongs people have committed against us. We are only disadvantage for ourselves as the longer we hold onto un-forgiveness, the longer we stay hurt. Being unforgiving does not heal us. It binds us. No-one wants to live like that!
Since forgiveness goes against our instincts. we have to aim to forgive by faith, out of obedience; whether we feel like it or not. We must trust God to do the work in us that needs to be done so that the we can forgive others as he has forgiven us.
Forgiveness brings peace. It means that I no longer give another person the power to have control over me. I release myself!
It doesn’t mean we’re going to sit down together for coffee next week or we are going to chill and hangout. However, forgiveness means that I am not going to carry the hurt anymore.
I am letting it go to Jesus….