How to Truly Forgive
Forgiveness is Possible
I have not seen many hubs on Forgiveness. I'm sure it's because this is a tough subject. I'm going to try and attempt it.
I could'nt forgive for the longest time. I was eaten up inside and these "things" had power over me, in me and was controlling my life! I woke up with them everyday! I was so tired of this weight I was carrying. I had an injustice done to me and it clung to me for years.
I was not responsible for the injustice done, but I was responsible for allowing the emotional impact it was having on me. Once I came to an understanding of the person responsible for the injustice i was able to forgive them. I had to look deeper and realize I wasn't the cause, therefore I was no longer effected by it, therefore I was freed from the injustice. Praise God!!!
The Bible clearly states in 2 Corinthians 6:14 "Do not be yoked together with unbelievers, for what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? Now Verse 17 "Therefore come out from them and be seperate". Yoked means we are not to be coupled with as in marriage-bond together with sin. We are to not let their strongholds become ours. But take heed to yourselves that ye neither offend others nor be offended by others. For once we are in God's likeness we no longer comform to the ways of this world.
Being yoked together with an unbeliever is being tied to the sin in any form or fashion, whether by being a part of it by way of anger, revenge, hate, bitterness or resentment as a result of the sin. We are to be seperate from sin and hate sin, not our brother!!! We do NOT hate our brother or harbor any resentment toward him for if we do it is as if we did it to God. We are all members of one body, the body of Christ. Therefore do Not rejoice when your enemy fails.
In Luke 17:3 it states: "If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him". Rebuke means "to correct" even if you need to say a sharp word. But be careful to edify (meaning instruct/improve) in your words. Edify in faith.
In Matthew 18:15 it states; " If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you, if he listens to you, you have won your brother over". And verse 16 on states; But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses...and if he refuses to listen, tell it to the church...and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector".
A pagan is one who worships false God's and false goods. An idolator, heathen, not a christian. In 1 Corinthians 10:20 it says "The sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons". So we are not to participate with a pagan. When you have done all you can do and someone remains a pagan then you are to leave and be no part of it.
We are never to sit back and gloat, that God will give them what they deserve? Absolutly NOT! This is the same as unforgiveness! We need to have compassion. We are to love our brothers and to pray for their restoration in Jesus Christ so that they may be restored. God loves them too. That is why Jesus said on the cross when he was crucified, God forgive them, for they know not what they do!
God clearly wants us "to be purified from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God" 2 Corinthians 7:1.
I guess God had his way of approaching these "things" I could'nt let go of. I knew it was going to take a miracle and that miracle came from God.
It took me a very long time to realize that I was the one who was suffering because I was the one who was taking on something that clearly didn't belong to me., I had to let it go. I had to let go of the hurt and bitterness it was causing me. I was the one who was stuck in unforgiveness and struggling with it all therefore dividing and seperating my relationship with God. Destroying all that was good. I gave something power over my life instead of giving it to God.
You see, forgiveness is not forgetting an injustice done. It is the understanding that allows us to set aside the emotional impact of that injustice pertaining to ourselves. When we no longer hold these emotions and have understanding for the person, we have forgiven them. We have come to an understanding that everyone, including ourselves needs time to grow and to learn, that we all need to be more gentle and understanding of where others are in "their" life. We have all been there, haven't we? No one is exactly where anyone else is in life. God will and is working in "all" our lives.
So how do we understand where others are in their life and be able to except it. I believe God in his master plan made it possible for us to relate to anothers experiance. Because their struggles may be similar to ours. Therefore they gain a better understanding by where they are in life by our unique testimony. This way others can relate to us because they are where we are. We all have a purpose and ALL things work together for the Glory of God.
So many struggle with thinking they are to forget the injustice. That they cannot be forgiven till they can forget. Not true! Forgetting is not possible. Our minds store everything. This is a fact we cannot change. Learning to except is something we can do.
I came to know, for a fact, that we cannot do it alone. I was doing it alone and that wasn't working. I left God out, therefore I suffered the consequences. Since I have chosen to let God in I am more at peace because i realize now that my focus needs to be on him.....no matter what!
I had heard someone say that "while our focus is on God, he will take care of our troubles". I didn't know how true that was until I experianced it for myself. Once I started putting my focus on God, he was taking care of my troubles. It was a miracle!
Unforgiveness is a divider, it causes division, not only between family and friends but between us and God. Forgiveness is the most unselfish thing we can do. In Matthew 6:14 and 15 clearly states, "For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly father will also forgive you. but if you do not forgive men their sins, your father will not forgive your sins".
I basically allowed something else to have control over my life and my happiness and peace of mind and in the end I was alone with me and unforgiveness. We were partners in a crime, a crime against God. You see unforgiveness is a violation of God's word. It is a destructive attitude. I wound up resenting the very ones I loved and life was meaningless.
I had to learn that you not only need to be forgiving of others but we also need to be forgiving of ourselves and realize that "no one" is perfect and we can't be perfected until we are perfected thru God. I found out the hard way because it took me forever to come to grips with it. I wasted precious time! But in the end God knew when I'd be ready to give it up and allow him to perfect me, to give me the spirit of forgiveness and to remember how many times has he forgiven me.