Forgiving Hurts We Don’t Deserve
It is truly amazing how some people attempt to justify an angry, unforgiving heart. They may think, The Lord knows what that person did to me, so He understands why I feel this way. Well, He certainly understands, but that doesn’t mean He approves.
Because He faced appalling betrayal and abandonment, Jesus knows human emotions inside and out. And yet He’s not in agreement that we should feel justified about an unforgiving attitude. The Savior had a God-centered view of forgiveness that withstood the vilest torture. This is something we should thank God for every morning. Why? Because we are the ones who betray the Lord daily.
We have wronged Jesus in ways no one has ever wronged us. We’ve denied Him His rightful place in our lives. We’ve doubted His Word. We’ve ignored His instruction. We’ve left Him behind and kicked Him out of our day-to-day lives. We have sinned against Him and shamed Him by sinning against other people.
What is Jesus’ response to this abuse? “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28). Now, do you really believe He will justify your unforgiveness under any circumstances? No, He won’t.
When you look to God to excuse your unforgiving heart, you’ll hear Him answer back, “Look at the cross.” There, you will discover the price that was paid for your own forgiveness. Then you’ll understand the solemn responsibility, which was spelled out in Colossians 3:13: “Forgive as the Lord forgave you” (niv, emphasis added). Just as we have been forgiven, so we must now become forgivers.