But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:15
Forgiveness is a hard choice, but a choice it still is. When people hurt us, we can either forgive them and move on, or we can let the hurt take over our hearts.
Do they deserve our forgiveness? Especially when they never apologize? No. So, how can we possibly let it go, say it’s okay, not be mad anymore, not be hurt anymore? We can’t. It’s as simple as that. So, why does the bible say we must forgive? It’s not fair, is it? Well, what they did to Jesus wasn’t fair either. What makes you so much more special than Him?
What happens to us when we can’t forgive? We hold onto the hurt. The hurt takes over our lives and then spreads its ugly wings to those close to us, hurting them, which is really the last thing we want, right? I mean, they don’t deserve to be hurt by us any more than we deserved to be hurt in the first place, right?
What happens to the ones who hurt us when we don’t forgive them? Oh, they might feel a smudge of guilt every once in while, but they probably laughed about it and then went on to their next victim. Have we hurt them by letting anger take control? No. They probably don’t even know we care that much, especially since we don’t want them to know. We do have our pride.
The bible says to forgive. What happens when we don’t do what God says? We sin. Sin separates us from God. What happens when we are separated from God? The devil has an open door to our lives, and he has been scratchin’ at that door for a long time, hasn’t he – Just waiting to take one from God, and if he can’t have our souls, he will surely make us pay, won’t he? God is our only protection from the evil in this world. Why on earth would we ever want to move out of his presence? Yet, when we harbor anger and hate, that’s exactly what we do. We separate ourselves from God’s love and protection. Oh, He is still there watching over us. He won’t let the devil have us, but if we move away from Him, well that’s our free will kicking in, isn’t it?
Malicious people don’t deserve forgiveness, yet we are told to forgive. We cannot be forgiven, if we don’t also forgive. So, what’s the definition of forgiveness anyway? According to Word Hippo, to forgive means to pardon, to waive any negative feeling or desire for punishment. Synonyms: overlook, endure, feel no malice towards.
To WAIVE your negative feelings. To endure the pain. To let go of malice. How can we do this? We can’t, but with God’s help, we can. It’s a process, for sure. But we know that God says vengeance belongs to Him, not us. Let Him handle their punishment. He will.
We have also deserved punishment at some point, but we have been forgiven, so we must forgive others. Close that door to satan. Don’t move away from God, make a choice to begin the process of forgiveness, though they do not deserve it, and walk away from your transgressor and the hold they have on your happiness. Quit giving them the power to ruin your life. Find a new path and new friends who will be good to you. After all, how can happiness ever fill your heart again if it is filled with hate, and why should God ever forgive us, if we cannot forgive others?
And my friends, we need forgiveness.