Sometimes it can be difficult to forgive others, in fact it can even feel unnatural to forgive! Sometimes we cling to this desire to hold on to our hurt and remember the unforgivable acts done to us. Maybe you were accused of something you didn't do. You were treated with blatant disrespect, cheated, lied, or stolen from. We have all been there, and it can be extremely difficult to forgive that person and move on from it.
In order to get in the habit of forgiving others, we first need to understand the forgiveness given to us and how to receive it!
1 John 1:9 says “But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness”
This verse serves as a great reminder on two things.
- We all have acted and can act in ways to others that we need forgiveness from. When we stop and think about the pain we are feeling, we need to remember that we have probably caused a similar emotion in someone else.
- If you are a believer in Christ and understand that you are not perfect, and that you do need forgiveness, you will be forgiven. We can accept God’s continual forgiveness to us, for all of our past, present and future sins.
Forgiveness forever changes us. When we experience it, it changes how we hold onto those hurts and wounds caused by others!Once you understand this truth, really understand it - you can then give forgiveness to others!
In Colossians 3:13 it says “Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.”
Whether it's creating a reminder on your phone, a note on your bathroom mirror, or fridge, take the time to create a visual reminder for yourself of how you have been forgiven! Reference it every time you feel hurt, mistreated and are struggling to forgive! It won't be easy at first, and may take time to form a habit of self-awareness, but it will be worth it! The results over time will bring you more joy, happiness, and fulfillment.
To learn more and dive in deeper, check out an awesome Bible Reading Plan we created called Exploring Forgiveness through Film. You will get a chance to breakdown how popular movies and characters give you a new perspective on the importance of understanding forgiveness, accepting forgiveness and offering forgiveness.
Or hear more from our messages Finding Happiness in Forgiveness, and Choosing Forgiveness.