“…forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you.” (Ephesians 4:32)
Unforgiveness is not your friend. It does not empower you, it weakens and blocks blessing. It has the stench of pride on it because it tries to take God’s place in dealing with your offender. It also takes up valuable real estate in your mind and heart, incubating anger and playing constant reruns of what’s been done to you. Unforgiveness makes your offender the center of things, and this amounts to idolatry because that spot belongs only to God. He is jealous to be the center, but your unforgiving heart leases that space to your villain at great cost to your own well-being.
Forgiveness does the opposite: It leaves the heavy duty of vengeance to God, freeing your strength to be used in fulfilling your purpose of glorifying Him. Forgiveness dances on the beach by the sea of forgiveness in which the Father drowned your own sin, offering you the opportunity to cast the sin of your offender there too so it won’t weigh you down. Forgiveness is humility which recognizes that its hand has received so much grace it cannot raise fighting fists; only palms in praise.
Having cleared the space where anger and bitterness once occupied, you make room for God’s blessing of peace, joy, and purpose. The air is cleared of negative soundtracks to horror stories of injustice done to you and is filled with the sweet song of deliverance from the cage where unforgiveness kept you. In such a clear space, you can hear the voice of God and His words of truth are music to your soul.
Why would you wait so long to get here?
Forgiveness is not about deserving, it’s all about grace. Don’t try to reason with it, it doesn’t make sense because love defies reason. You may not love your offender and what they did, but your love for Jesus and what He’s done for you provides enough power to scale the mountain of offense.
You have a life to live, a purpose to fulfill, and a God to glorify. Your offenders have taken up enough of your time and mental space. It’s time to get on with the business of abundant living, so the business of bitterness has to go! God is not mocked, no one ever gets away with anything. Vengeance is His business; forgiveness is yours.
Click here to view a short video for further reflection on this topic!