Forgiving Others

No. I am not going to tell about times when I needed —perhaps still need— to forgive someone. Would you post similar events from your life? Those battle scars have not fully healed. Which is why studying forgiveness is critical.

I know forgiveness is still needed when I strongly associated the hurt with a particular person. That person still has a hold on me, and shapes my personality; not by what I want to do and be, but by what I fear I must do to avoid a new battle or to take revenge, causing a new and offsetting hurt that will prolong the war of wills. That person, my adversary, continues to warp, perhaps carve, me even long after we have parted company.

Forgiveness ends the battles, breaks the cycle of revenge and counter revenge.

Forgiveness does not let my adversary off, it merely removes my responsibility to fix that person, to show that person how much I have been hurt. Someone else must take on those tasks.

Forgiveness allows me to let go of my adversary’s sin and no longer allow it to hurt me. For as long as I hold a grudge against my adversary, my adversary continues to keep my wound open, delays my healing, and toughens my soul against others, even those who would be my friends. Holding a grudge is like picking at a scab, preventing new skin from growing, yielding tough skin that is no longer smooth and supple, a scar that pulls and distorts adjacent skin. But by forgiving an adversary, letting go of their sin, I can heal minimizing my scaring, maximizing my restoration.

Corrie Ten Boom, a Christian woman who survived a Nazi concentration camp during the Holocaust, said, “Forgiveness is to set a prisoner free, and to realize the prisoner was you.”

Then he took a deep breath and breathed into them.
“Receive the Holy Spirit,” he said.
“If you forgive someone’s sins, they’re gone for good.
If you don’t forgive sins, what are you going to do with them?”

—John 20:22-23 (The Message)

How has forgiving someone freed you?

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