Updated: Aug 5, 2022
How do I forgive them after they did that?
#Foodforthought - Sometimes God connects us with people who are not loving to teach us how to love 💡
What Is Forgiveness?
What does Jesus Say (video)?
How do I Forgive the Unforgivable (3 Keys)?
When you let go of all feelings of resentment, bitterness, and/or anger towards another person who has caused you harm intentionally or unintentionally.
Your ability to release those ill feelings and treat people with love despite their behavior is forgiveness.
Forgiveness Is Not...
Holding a grudge and counting the number of offenses someone has done against you. Your initial response to just "stay out of their way" is not forgiveness, that is avoidance.
Forgiveness is not treating people the way they treat you... be mindful of the "keep that same energy" mindset.
What Did Jesus Say?
Jesus shares the parable with us about the Unforgiving Debtor in the book of Matthews chapter 18 starting at verse 21. Through this story, He shows us how God sees people who do not forgive.
(Warning, this is a tough one to accept.)
Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?” “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!
Matthew 18:21-22 NLT
Action: Go read the bible and read the rest of the chapter to read the parable that Jesus shares.
How Do I Forgive the Unforgivable?
I am going to share with you 3 Keys that will help you adopt a forgiving heart... With all that is being shared keep in mind that God tells us to LOVE each other as we love ourselves. Everything we do should be rooted in love for others.
Key #1 - Look at things from the other person's perspective to understand WHY they did it.
When you can change perspectives, you can empathize. To show empathy means to share or consider their feelings or experiences that lead them to that moment.
Empathizing does not mean they were right for what they did, it is simply to give you clarity on WHY what happened to you happened.
Example: When I understood WHY my Father choose not to be a part of my life as a child, I was able to forgive him. Considering his circumstances back in the day, it was the best choice for me and him. Now that I understand I am no longer angry or bitter about it. I forgave him.
Key #2 - Expect to be offended more than once.
People are going to hurt you, they may only do it once OR some may be repeat offenders. Nevertheless, expect it to happen. I am not saying that everyone is going to do you wrong and to be on the lookout for that moment with everyone you meet. I am saying do not be surprised in any case that it does happen.
Be mature enough to resolve it through communication if possible. Be mature enough to walk away, if needed. Be wise enough to deescalate. Be strong enough to let other trusted people know what's going on if needed.
Key #3 - Learn to love from a distance.
Fool me once SHAME ON YOU.
Fool me twice SHAME ON ME.
Fool me three times ... love me from a distance.
It is okay to not associate with certain people anymore! Sometimes, that is the BEST option.
Keep those repeat offenders who don't seem to care AT A DISTANCE. Yes, pray for them and be polite when you see them in passing BUT no one says you have to stay in any form of relationship with them!
Here is a picture of my Dad and I, had I not learned how to forgive this restoration would not have been possible!
God wants the best for you and there are some tough things we have to address, correct, and reconstruct to grow.
So Tell Me...
Which Key will be easiest for you to adapt?
Which one will be more of a challenge for you to do?
Something you do this week: Make a list of everyone that has offended you. As you go through each name, reflect on the situation, and as you do this pay attention to the emotion that arises if any. If you feel any ill feelings towards that person, it is possible that you have not forgiven them. Pray about it.
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I LOVE YOU, TALK SOON ♥️