Choosing to forgive uncovers my heart and exposes misplaced expectations. If someone doesn’t treat us as expected, our feelings get hurt. These expectations left unmet have led to broken relationships.
Sometimes, God will lead us to work on forgiving others for an extended period of time. He reminds us to forgive, forgive and then forgive some more.
God has led me through forgiving people and organizations who had rubbed me wrong or even offended me. Some were easier to forgive than others. But my prayer each time was that of the Lord Jesus when He was on the cross, “Lord forgive them, for don’t know what they are doing.”
Here are some examples:
- My attitude concerning the last church I went to… Lord, forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.
- Concerning the family member who rubs me wrong, has toxic views or habits… Lord, forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.
- The organization, league, or club that didn’t meet my expectations as I needed them to… Lord, forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.
Our trust is to be in God first. But we are often susceptible to trusting people, churches, or organizations more than God to meet our needs. Even Jesus knew people would let Him down.
Jesus didn’t trust them,
because he knew all about people.
No one needed to tell him about human nature,
for he knew what was in each person’s heart.
John 2:24-25, NLT
Why are we offended or hurt when others let us down? Man is not God; God can read our minds; He knows our needs and will meet them when we ask Him. But people are limited; they can’t read your mind and can be selfish and most undoubtedly imperfect.
If Jesus came to forgive sins, shouldn’t that be our highest call, to forgive just like Jesus did? We are to be imitators of Christ. Let’s imitate Him in this. Trust God first; forgive people.
These years of Covid have brought many grievances between family and friends. Some relationships may still be taxed because of the choices made. Choose forgiveness, for love covers over a multitude of sins.
Therefore, be earnest and disciplined in your prayers.
Most important of all,
continue to show deep love for each other,
for love covers a multitude of sins.
1 Peter 4:7, NLT
The way God loved us was to forgive us. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Can we do that for family, acquaintances, co-workers, neighbors, and people at church or a league? Although they may still disappoint us, choose to forgive.
When your eyes are on Jesus, others can rub up against you wrong and be unkind to you, but you aren’t looking to them to fulfill anything in you; it doesn’t seem to matter as much because your eyes and trust are in the right person, that’s Jesus.
Write out or say a prayer to Jesus. Here is one of mine.
“Jesus, ______ has hurt me by saying these untrue statements about me. She may believe them, but they are not even true. Help me forgive her so I can resume a healthy relationship with her again. I look up to her, but she has let me down. I find myself evading her phone calls and not calling her when necessary. I want to set things right by forgiving her. Jesus, You forgave so readily, even while they were putting You on the cross. They didn’t know what they were doing, and You forgave. She also didn’t know her words would cut through me as they did. But I am choosing to forgive her anyway. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
This was a heavy blog but necessary. Sometimes I need to talk about the hard things with my friends. So, I decided to share on the way of forgiveness. Trust God-Forgive others. Lay those grievances down at Jesus’ feet. Unforgiveness binds you, not them, so when you leave it at Jesus feet, He takes His key out and unlocks you from those chains of bitterness, doubt and anger. Then you are able to walk away and be free again. Breathe. Now doesn’t that feel much better.
May God bless you as you process through forgiving in your life. If you need prayer, reach out to me. I’d be honored to pray for you. Fill out the form below or use this prayer form link.