We can all agree with that. There are times when it is easy, times when it is hard. Life is like a road. It has its smooth spots, but it has those potholes too. And those potholes can bring us down sometimes. They bump us in a way that is not easy to fix.
People can hurt us. And that is not easily amended. The pain that comes from trust broken and our faith is shaken is harsh. It is not something that is easily forgotten.
Now, I’m definitely not the expert in knowing how badly people can hurt you. I’ve had experience with people hurting me, but I’m no expert.
Anyways, I know about the pain caused by this kind of hurt. And I know that no matter what they did to us, we’re called to forgive them. And I know how truly hard that can be.
If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you.
I, personally, have a hard time forgiving people, especially siblings that will repeatedly do the same thing over and over. But even without that problem, I still have a hard time.
I’m very quick to say the words, “I forgive you,” but I’m not so quick in actually meaning it. I really wish that I was, but instead I tend to hold grudges.
It’s hard to let grudges go, but we must if we’re to be true examples of Christ.
But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too.
This is hard. I know. But how can we hold on to grudges and still be equally loving and kind to everyone around us. We can’t. Grudges stop us from truly accepting and loving people for who they are.
This is a struggle that may take a long time (maybe even years) to overcome, but it may help the process to know what forgiveness is. When you accept someone’s forgiveness, you are not forgetting their sin. That is not how it works. For when God said:
And I will forgive their wickedness
and I will never again remember their sins.
He wasn’t saying that He’d have amnesia and just absolutely forget our sins. No. Our God does not have amnesia. He’s perfect, incapable of fault.
What He meant was that He was making a new covenant (starting a new relationship, entering into a new agreement) with His people. One where our past sins would have no impact on this new covenant. One where we could start on a clean slate. It effect, He “forgot” about our sin. Really, He would remember the sins we have committed. But our relationship would be unaffected by it.
This is the type of forgiveness that we need to show to those we hold grudges against. No matter what they’ve done to hurt, we are called by God’s example to show forgiveness. You may think that they do not deserve it. But you owe it to God to forgive them.
God’s son paid the ultimate price to forgive all of us of our sins. What right do we have to deny forgiveness to those who are sinners, just like us?