To Forgive and Be Forgiven
Ephesians 4:32, "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." (NIV)
This is a verse I need taped to every focal point. Be kind, compassionate, forgiving. I can do that, right? Seems easy enough. I'm a kind person, I love to give, and my heart aches for the lost and the hurt. Ahhh, but then God also said f-f-forgive. Yes, I stutter on that last one.
Forgive. I want to be forgiven right? Who doesn't? We all mess up. Miss the mark. Say hurtful things, and we expect it. "Please forgive me, I had a bad day.", may be the phrase we say to a friend or loved one when we loose our cool for a moment.
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It's easy to find an excuse for our bad moment or behavior. Or for letting someone down, breaking promises or commitments with no real reason, ect. But is it fair? Or should we have more control over our thoughts and actions? So hard to do sometimes, stop before we speak. Stop and listen to God before we do something that we know deep in our gut we shouldn't do. We know it's wrong, but somehow we just can't seem to stop it before it happens. We aren't strong enough, or maybe our walk with God isn't where it should be to feel the Holy Spirit tugging at our hearts urging us to stop before it's too late. So I urge you, to find HIM. So you can feel HIM and those moments of asking for forgiveness will be less in your life. And if you have wronged someone, I pray that you can find the courage to send them a letter, email, text or pay them a visit, and stand tall and strong and say, "Can you please forgive me?" No excuses. No but this, or because of this I acted this way. Just simply, "Can you please forgive me?" You may not get an answer, and you may never know if they have. But you have released them, and it's in their court now. You have opened the door for God to work on you. To bless you, heal you and grow you.
On the flip side, you read this and think, "Hey I'm the victim here, I was wronged, and noone came to me to ask me to forgive them." So what do you do? If you were wronged by someone, hurt by their actions or thoughts, and they didn't approach you, you have to still choose to forgive them, so you can be forgiven. Some people may never know that what they did or said hurt you. Some do. Some people are not strong enough, or don't think they have to ask for forgiveness. Others may not know how to ask, in fear of facing you. YOU can still be released. YOU can get on your knees and tell the Lord," I need to forgive them. I DO forgive them.And will you also forgive me for not letting go. I don't want to carry this anymore. I want to be released, to be healed, to be free and to be forgiven myself. Please Lord help me to forgive and cast these feelings away to be set free." Noone says you have to forget, but we do have to forgive. There isn't a person on this planet not worthy of asking or receiving forgiveness.
So I pray that today, you make the step to healing, either by righting a wrong, or letting go of the pain. I pray that your days are lighter, freer and happier with that burden lifted and God by your side.
It's not a choice, it's a commandment that God gave us for a better, happier, more fulfilled life. God Bless you through this journey.