How to Forgive Others through Christ
People can never be what we want them to be, but we can be what we chose to be. We cannot choose how people will to treat us, but we can choose how to react to their treatment towards us.
Can I forgive and let go?
Have you ever wanted to forgive but wondered how and why you should do it? Many of us would love to live in peace with other people; family loved ones, friends, relatives and work mates. That would happen if we lived in an ideal world. The odds of living in perfect harmony with everyone may be as low as one-to-nine. People can never be what we want them to be, but we can be what we chose to be. We cannot choose how people are going to treat us, but we can choose how to react to their treatment towards us. Now that is easy to say, but not easy to do at all. The emotional reaction that comes to us when we are hurt by other people may not be as simple and basic as it may seem. When someone hurts you, they cause an emotional wound in the soul. Just like any other wound, it needs dressing and care to heal. At times we know that forgiveness is the best choice we have even if it done it through clenched teeth. However most of the time that does not alleviate the hurt and the pain that lies within. The emotional benefits of forgiving are worth the cost of short-term discomfort on our part. Forgiveness from the heart will depend on a deeper understanding of why it is necessary to forgive.
Five Reasons why you should forgive
- The Bible asks you to. There is so much in the Bible about forgiveness, but two scriptures hit the nail on the head. The first one is in Luke 6:37-38. The scripture says that we should not judge and we too shall not be judged; we should not condemn and we too shall not be condemned, and finally, we should forgive if we want to be forgiven as well. Those were the words of Christ himself. The second Scripture verse is in Matt 6:14-15. It tells us that if we are willing to forgive others when they sin against us, we shall also receive forgiveness from our heavenly father. On the contrary if we chose not to forgive, we too fail the forgiveness test. How clearer can that be?
- God is our prime example of forgiveness. There are so many scriptures that offer forgiveness to us if we are willing to receive it. They are too many to list here but one very good example is in Isaiah 1:18. It is a call from God to reason out with him. He says here that regardless of how woeful our sins may be, even as red as scarlet, he will blot them out and make our hearts as white as snow or wool.
- We avoid the root of bitterness. What we do not realize most of the time is that when we hold un-forgiveness in our hearts, it hurts us more than those who hurt us. If let to stay long enough, it results to resentment. We recent those we are angry at and those who look like them. If that goes on for a while, it turns to bitterness which is destructive to other relationships that we have as well as our own health. Bitterness can affect your entire life if not let go.
- We have an example in Christ Jesus. From the start of his public ministry, all that Jesus did was preach the good news to the people. For his goodness and genuine love for humanity, he received back abuses, hatred, and finally death through crucifixion. What can be more hurtful? The un-forgiveness that haunts us most is one that comes from the hurts caused by those we loved most. Jesus loved humanity, but even when they hurt him, all he said was, “Forgive them father for they know not what they are doing."
- Jesus promises a reward for those who forgive. When teaching his disciples on the mountain side, Jesus asked his disciples, “what reward is there in only loving those who love us?’? So there is a reward for loving those who hurt us; our enemies. The reason why he asked that was to show that if we do not forgive, we shall not be any different from pagans. What separates you as a Christian?
He heals the brokenhearted
and binds up their wounds.(Psalms 147:3 NIV)
How do we therefore heal?
Forgive those who sin against you and leave the healing process to God, for he will take care of it. In the Lord’s Prayer part of receiving forgiveness is forgiving others. Who does not want to be forgiven?