In forgiving others, we acknowledge our pain. Admit our anger or resentment. Accept our responsibility. Then ask for forgiveness. We say some of the ten hardest words in the English language: “I am sorry. I was wrong. Will you forgive me?” We don’t defend ourselves or blame the other person. Rather, we take responsibility for what we said or did, or what we should have said or done, and ask for forgiveness. “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for
Jesus taught us to pray, “Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” (Matthew 6:12). In forgiving others, we acknowledge before God that we are experiencing the pain and hurt done to us. We admit that we are angry toward or resent the ones who wounded us. We also stop blaming others and accept responsibility for our own attitude and behavior. What happens when we play some sport, and we play poorly and lose? Or we work on some project
In forgiving others, after we have acknowledged the pain and hurt done to us, we then admit that we are angry toward or resent the person who wounded us. When wounded, we react to protect ourselves. Sometimes we lash out in a fit of anger. Sometimes we withdraw behind a wall of resentment. Sometimes we do both. We admit that we are unlike Jesus. “When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats.
God calls us to forgive others to the same depth he forgives us. “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32). How could we possibly do that? We weren’t born with a generous and gracious attitude of forgiving others. We learn it when we’re born again. We first learn to accept forgiveness from God. We then learn to forgive others as we have been forgiven. I’ve found it helpful to work
I recall in growing up a frequent family prayer was for the Lord to “lead, guide, and direct” us. As children we were no doubt just parroting the words somewhat mindlessly. Nonetheless, we somehow recognized the need for God’s continual guidance. “Lord, guide me.” “Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me” (Psalm 31:3). Sometimes in seeking God’s guidance, all the people, places, and events of our lives seem ordered like puzzle