The word of this week for me is Forgiveness. Forgiveness is the act of forgiving or being forgiven. To forgive means to grant pardon, to cease resentment or to cancel a debt. Sometimes we may harbour grudges against other people. The reason for this could be because they hurt us, caused us great pain or heartbreak. This is likely to result in bitterness which can allow spirits of jealously and envy to creep in. For instance your ex broke your heart and because of this you hold feelings of hatred against him or her. The ex moves on and does well in life, you continue to resent and hate everything he or she does. He or she has a partner you become jealous of their relationship and subconsciously you wish ill against them. Many of us do not realise the resentment we may have is likely to hurt us instead. The time. The thoughts. The tears. The pain. The heartbreak. This is hurting you, he or she is not crying the tears, you are!
You may say yeah I have forgiven him or her. However if we are still thinking about what they have done, then we have not truly forgiven them. The phrase ‘Forgive and Forget’,works hand in hand. You cannot truly forgive without not also forgetting what they have done. Yes, it would be hard to forget but it should not be a constant memory in our minds.
This is how I think of forgiveness. Jesus came down from heaven down to earth. He saved us from our sins, gave us a new chance and a new life with him. He gave us a chance for a new slate. His blood gave us a new day and a new season. If Jesus can forgive, Why can’t we? Who are we to hold bitter feelings and thoughts against others? Jesus talked about the importance of forgiveness and how we should be merciful. In Matthew ch 5, Jesus said those who are merciful are blessed and they will also receive mercy.
The Bible also teaches that if we do forgive, God will forgive us. I do not know about you, but I do not wish to be thinking about the pain that someone has caused. I would rather have a forgiving heart where I can bury the hatchet, show mercy, love and keep it moving. Aint nobody got time to sit down and cry because Harry and Jane, Abena or Ayo did something to you and me. Life is too short to hold onto grudges and to be resentful. Smile and be happy that God has forgiven you and I. This means we can also forgive too. Kiss and make up, let bygones be bygones and laugh it off.
Here are some bible verses on forgiveness:
- Matthew 6: 14-15 (NIV)-For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
- Hebrews 10:17 (NIV)-Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.
- Daniel 9:9 (NIV)-The Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him
- Matthew 5: 22-24 (NIV)- But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.
- 1 Corinthians 13: 4-7 (NIV)- Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Ephesians 4: 31-32 (NIV)- Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. 2 Corinthians 2: 5-8 (NIV)-If anyone has caused grief, he has not so much grieved me as he has grieved all of you to some extent—not to put it too severely.The punishment inflicted on him by the majority is sufficient. Now instead, you ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. I urge you, therefore, to reaffirm your love for him.
- Micah 7:18-19 (NIV)-Who is a God like you,who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.