God’s command to us is to “forgive one another as God in Christ has forgiven you” (Ephesians 4:32).
It’s important to understand that for us, forgiveness is as much for the forgiver as the forgiven. Lack of forgiveness creates a bitterness that eats at your soul. It creates a blockage between you and God, which often spills over to other relationships.
Forgiveness is relinquishing your desire to punish. Humanly we want to hurt the person who has hurt us or a loved one. When we forgive, we surrender that to God to take care of as He chooses.
Forgiveness is not condoning what happened. It does not mean what happened is okay. Forgiveness is not just saying the words, “I forgive you.” True forgiveness must be sincere. Forgiveness is not the same as reconciliation. Forgiveness is primarily accomplished between you and God. Reconciliation involves a restoration of trust between two people.
Forgiveness may take time. It involves: 1) admitting the hurt and anger we have and finding constructive ways to release that anger; 2) seeking God’s perspective on the situation and person; 3) choosing to surrender the hurt and anger to God; and 4) choosing to forgive as Christ has forgiven you.
Forgiveness is not a feeling but an act of the will in obedience to God.
Choosing to receive and give forgiveness...