Forgiveness is hard. Living forgiveness is ever harder. But we don’t have much choice if we want to have tender hearts and live fully. And the Bible is pretty adamant about forgiving too. This is what Jesus told us:
“Be alert. If you see your friend going wrong, correct him. If he responds, forgive him. Even if it’s personal against you and repeated seven times through the day, and seven times he says, ‘I’m sorry, I won’t do it again,’ forgive him.” (Luke 17:3-4, MSG)
We don’t only need to forgive once. But we need to live forgiveness. Breath forgiveness. Forever and ever. Ouch.
Forgiveness does not come naturally to me especially when I’ve been severely hurt. After my first husband run away with another woman I struggled with forgiveness. But very soon I realized that I had a decision to make. Either I would not forgive and become a bitter person. Or I would – by God’s grace- forgive and become an openhearted person. I chose the latter and I have never regretted it.
Unforgiveness hurts us, not the offender.
Forgiveness blesses us, not the offender.
As Mary DeMuth puts it “We are not built to carry offense. God designed us for joyful freedom.” I take joyful freedom over bitterness any day. How about you?
Wanting to live openheartedly gives us motivation to forgive. But even then it’s not easy, impossible without Jesus. But Jesus changed everything by carrying all our sins on the cross. Because of God’s grace forgiveness is possible.
Mary DeMuth writes “If I don’t believe that God’s grace is big enough to cover their [offenders’] sin, I have a small view of God, of Jesus’ outrageous act on the cross, and of grace.”
The aggressive forgiveness we call grace (Romans 5:20, MSG) conquers all. God’s power to forgive is yours by grace through faith in Jesus. (Follow this link if you want to find how to forgive in four steps.)
Living forgiveness requires living in grace. Without grace we are not graceful, we are unable to forgive. But God is eager to help us to live forgiveness on a daily basis. Christ has prepared the way to forgiveness and the Holy Spirit is ready to supply us with everything we need to live and breath forgiveness with every fiber of our being.
How do we respond? Do we want to hold grudge forevermore? Or do we embrace grace for living forgiveness? I vote for the latter. How about you?
Thank you for preparing the way to forgiveness.
Give us all the grace we need to forgive.
Show us how we can live forgiveness on a daily basis.
Fill us with hope, grace, and love.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: Do you tend to hold grudges? Or are your a grace-giver? What does make it easier for you to forgive? How does forgiving make you feel?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you live forgiveness on a daily basis!
Photo courtesy of Domonic Webster, design by Mari-Anna Stålnacke. Linking up today with Sharing His Beauty, Hear it on Sunday, use it on Monday, Playdates with God, and counting blessings with Ann Voskamp: #1061 Forgiving brings freedom. #1062 Forgiving is possible by God’s grace.
I am part of Mary DeMuth’s launch team for her new bookand I have to say that this book absolutely rocks. It’s not only well written but it is full of uplifting stories that just I can’t capture here on the blog. But make sure to visit the other blogs that are linked up here. They are also blogging through the book. Maybe together we can give a more vivid and accurate picture of the book. Also, make sure to visit this awesome blog where people share how this book has impacted them! You can buy your copy Here or at a bookstore near you. And note that this book will make a perfect gift too! BLESSINGS!