Friday, May 27, 2011

But They Don't Deserve My Forgiveness

In my post yesterday we talked about the meaning of forgiveness. Forgiveness is not forgetting. That's impossible. Forgiveness is not keeping a mental record of the wrong done against me to use as a weapon in the future. In other words, forgiveness isn't a feeling - it's a choice. I must choose to forgive even when I don't feel like it.

But what about those times when the person who has wronged me in no way deserves my forgiveness. What about those times when that person won't admit that they did anything wrong and refuse to even acknowledge my hurt? Do I still need to forgive them? To that question I find Ephesians 4:32 to be very helpful. In this verse we are told to be kind to one another, tender-hearted, and to forgive one another just as God has forgiven us.

The word in this verse for "forgive" has as its root the same word where we get our word "grace." What is "grace?" Grace is when we get something we don't deserve. The Bible teaches in Ephesians 2:8-9 that we are saved by grace. In other words, we don't deserve God's salvation.

The same is true with forgiveness. We should choose to forgive, even when the other person doesn't deserve it. After all, how many of us deserved God's forgiveness? Not a one of us.

Forgiveness is tough but I have heard it said that we are never more like God than when we forgive. I think there is a lot of truth to that statement. Choose forgiveness!

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