Thursday, January 14, 2016

Day 17 of our 40 Day Fast and Focus- "FORGIVENESS TO FORGETNESS"

Matthew 6:12-15

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.

Forgive yourself and forgive them.

Being unforgiving means you refuse or are reluctant to forgive someone. It means you are resentful, unmerciful and hold something against someone. Being unforgiving is mental, emotional and physical poison.  Unfortunately, unforgiveness is a poison every one of us sips from way too much and way too often, and it is slow leaking lethal. This poison is a mixture of bitterness which is anger and disappointment at being treated unfairly, outright anger and hostility which are strong feelings of annoyance and displeasure, hatred, resentment and fear. Being unforgiving means you live in a state of turmoil and stress--- which is now being found to be at the core of mental depression and health problems such as cancer and arthritis.In fact, scientist have now created a new diagnosis called PTED (post-traumatic embitterment disorder) to describe people who can't forgive others' transgressions against them. Doctors state "bitterness is a nasty solvent that erodes every good thing." This is why God commands us to truly forgive others prior to asking or obtaining forgiveness from Him! 

Many of us confuse forgiveness with forgetting or worse, we assume we've forgiven someone or something because whatever the offense was is over and done. Really forgiving something or someone is completely setting them free from the offense. You then get the offense away from you (casting it as far as east is from west), and out of you (don't replay it or repeat it ever again). 


1. Do not easily take up offense (Ecclesiastes 7:9). It should be the hardest thing in the world to get you offended or upset. Make your emotions like a fortified city against harm people may try to cause...some with evil intent, many quite innocently. Do you know that many times we get angry at someone's actions we incorrectly perceive as attacks, direct hits or attempts to hurt us when they don't even know or understand they're causing you harm? Rarely do people come directly at me with evil, so I've learned to pause and ponder something being said or done that I may not have all the facts or truth about their why before I add any emotion to the situation. I've learned the following is true, people are not necessarily against you, they're just for themselves. It has taken me years of practicing self control to avoid letting compliments go to my head or criticism enter my heart. I am often vilified for this behavior but as someone who's had a struggle with anger, I've learned not to go there. I won't let much get at me.

2. Forgive yourself.   Being unforgiving applies to not forgiving others AND not forgiving yourself. Many of us live life with feelings of deep and bitter anger, and ill-will, resentment so strong it justifies retaliation, we hold grudges and have a distasteful and distressing state of mind. We walk around ill tempered with an offensive disposition. This disposition shows up on our faces and in how we treat others. Learn to apply compassion, mercy and grace to your own self too. Quit beating yourself up, putting yourself down and dragging yourself down with guilt, shame and vain regret. Forgive yourself and you will find it easier to quickly forgive others, avoid or erase painful memories. Walk in love towards yourself and your fellow man...remember we're all fighting our own battles and remember LOVE NEVER FAILS!

Beloved, I forgive you completely AND I'm praying with and for you.

Resources to Help:

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