We all have had experiences where it was difficult to forgive someone. It might have been over a friendship, finances, or something more serious. Whatever the case, the longer we held onto the feelings of resentment, the more bitter we became.
That bitterness may have impacted our own relationships and attitude. But when we decide to forgive, that invisible weight is lifted from our shoulders and it is easier to move forward. When we forgive, we are being merciful to those who wronged us.
Jesus taught about the power of forgiveness. Colossians 3:13 reads, “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”
Here Christ is telling us that we need to forgive. That forgiveness is a holy principle. The best example of forgiveness comes from Christ moments before his death on the Cross.
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Here Jesus is saying he would forgive those who crucified Him, the Savior of Mankind. Christ’s comments on the Cross are a moving example about the tremendous power of forgiveness.
And there is tremendous power in it. There are stories of Holocaust survivors forgiving Nazis, parents forgiving criminals for what they did to their family members.
To forgive doesn’t change the impact of what happened. But as believers, when we forgive, we develop a stronger bond with God and set an example for others to follow.
1. Write down a time it was not as easy to forgive. What could you have done differently in that situation?
2. Commit Ephesians 4:32 to memory.
3. Think about an experience where someone forgave you for something. Reflect on what you felt.