A Forgiving Heart
Read: Genesis 16:1-18:15, Matthew 6:1-24, Psalm 7:1-17 and Proverbs 2:1-5
For me, one of the hardest things to do is to forgive someone who's hurt me. After all, doesn’t forgiving someone mean I’m giving up, that I’m over it, that the hurt that they caused doesn’t matter anymore?
Until the Lord opened my eyes to the true heart of forgiveness, that is exactly how I felt. I didn’t want anything to do with forgiveness. Over time, God has taught me to never forget that the ultimate forgiveness came for my sins on a cross. If I, in all my imperfection and disobedience, can be forgiven, then I must forgive others.
Ephesians 4:32 says, “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Our goal as Christians is to imitate Christ. He forgave us, which means we can forgive others. We can do this because the debt has been paid. This is a powerful and equipping truth.
Jesus reminds us of another important reason to forgive. “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-15). Forgiveness is for our benefit. We experience forgiveness in direct proportion to our willingness to forgive others. The Lord wants us to live an unbelievably blessed life through Him. Don’t let those blessings be hindered by living in bitterness and resentment toward others.