I’m going to be completely honest with you: I dread writing about the topic of forgiveness. So much so, that I was going to skip the usual Tuesday post and only do a Friday post this week.
When I decided to pursue the shove that the Lord gave me to begin writing, I knew that I was going to be sharing the good, the bad and the ugly…
It’s about to get ugly.
For the past 14+ years, we have felt the effects of the adverse actions of a few family members. Over and over again, without remorse, they have created strife in our family. They are stuck in the same recurring pattern, with no will to change. I have prayed for them and prayed with them, and now I am to the point where I have put a wall up to distance myself from them.
Here is the thing – I’ve forgiven one of the family members for their actions, but I refuse to forgive the other.
That’s right; I refuse to forgive this person.
And this is not right at all. The Holy Spirit has been convicting me to forgive, and I have been shoving that conviction away! Out of sight, out of mind.
As Followers of Christ, We Are Called to Forgive
The Bible states over and over the importance of forgiving one another. The ultimate act of forgiveness was from Christ, Himself. He died in the most excruciating, torturous, unthinkable way possible, for my sins, for our sins. I have been forgiven for my sins, so why can’t I forgive this particular person for their actions?
Is it pride? Is it anger? Is it because I will look weak? Is it because I want retribution for the pain that this person has caused? I don’t know. What I do know is that we are called to love another, no matter what. If we do not love and forgive one another, we are directly disobeying God’s Word and commands.
I am disobeying the Lord, and this hurts me to my core.
Here’s the thing: while I am struggling with the actions of what this person has done, the anger inside of me is only affecting one person – me.
The Good Book is full of verses about forgiveness. Here are my top five that I have been praying during my forgiveness struggles. If you are struggling with forgiveness, I know how you are feeling. I pray that these verses bring comfort and wisdom for you. May we have the courage to step up, speak up, and forgive!
1. Colossians 3:13
“Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you.”
2. Ephesians 4:31-32
“Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
3. Mark 11:25
“And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
4. Luke 6:37
“Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven.”
5. Matthew 18:21-35 – The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant
Verse 35 “So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart.”