Following Jesus is difficult! Have you ever been mad at someone and just wanted to wallow in the madness? I have. People wronged me and I was furious…. but I couldn’t stay mad…. because of Jesus.
If we truly know and believe what God did for us, then it is impossible, to stay mad at another person. Instead of being mad, we MUST forgive.
For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. – Matthew 6:14-15 (ESV)
God gave His Son Jesus to die on the cross for us while we were still sinners. That means BEFORE we asked for forgiveness! If God can forgive us, and we accept that, then we need to forgive others. If we do not, or cannot, forgive others, then the Father will not forgive our sins. That’s a promise that not many people talk about because it is painful. We don’t want to forgive, we want the other person to come crawling back to us in shame admitting they were wrong before we even consider forgiving them. It is a choice we have.
After a meeting, I left knowing that there was either a personal attack against me, or a concerned individual seeking honest answers. I chose the latter. If I would have seen it as a personal attack, whether it was or not, then I would have allowed a seed of discord – of anger – to gain root and grow. I knew that nothing good would come from that. Instead, I chose to see it as a concerned individual, and if it was a personal attack, I knew that God would deal with them and their heart. I in essence opted to forgive a possible offense, giving it to God to handle.
Have people planted a seed of a weed in you? Are you ripping that out before it takes root and grows, or are you watering it and allowing it to grow? When we forgive others, it gives us a freedom, and a peace, that can only come from God.
As you think about these things, take a few moments and watch this video…