Be gentle and ready to forgive; never hold grudges. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. * Colossians 3:13
One of the heaviest burdens people carry around with them is an unforgiving heart– and it’s a burden they don’t even recognize. Unforgiveness is a package deal. It comes with anger, sadness, bitterness, and misery. It effects every part of our life and can steal the joy out of everything we do. Often we don’t consider the damage we do to ourselves when we fail to forgive the one who hurt us. Unforgiveness can be compared to drinking poison and then waiting for the one who hurt us to die. Often we have been betrayed so badly, forgiveness seems impossible. Often is undeserved. You will always be effected by things that have happened in your life. And often, the scars from traumatic events in our life are there for years. Forgiveness is a huge step in healing. And when we consider all God has given us, all He has forgiven us, it’s not unreasonable for Him to expect us to forgive others, whether we feel like it or not. Forgiveness is an act of will, not emotions. It’s rooted in love, our love for God. You may not feel love toward the one you need to forgive, but extending forgiveness is an act of obedience to God…..and it comes with a great gift. The gift of freedom. It allows you to let go of these negative thoughts and emotions that often consume who you are so you can move on to bigger and better things. It keeps your past from determining your future. Setting down the burden of unforgiveness makes the way for joy and peace to take it’s place. It may be one of the hardest things you have ever done, but it’s one of the greatest things you can do for yourself….and for God.