Archive for June, 2013

Forgiveness“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” Luke 6:27-28 (NIV)

What?!?! No way!!! Is this even possible???

It is possible. I speak from experience. It is truly the hardest choice you will ever have to make… to forgive someone… even when everything within you screams for vengeance. You would rather see them suffer than forgive them. You would rather see them get what’s coming to them than forgive them. You would rather crawl across a floor of broken glass than forgive them. Am I being dramatic? Maybe. I just know what it’s like to be hurt so badly that the last thing I wanted to do is forgive.

Yet, God says this:

For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.Matthew 6:14

How can you argue with that? I know I need to be forgiven… often. So, how can I not forgive others?

Here are three things to keep in mind:

1. Notice it doesn’t say anything about them ASKING for forgiveness. It doesn’t say that they are sorry or repentant. We have to forgive, even if the person could not care less about who they have hurt or about what they have done.

2. It also doesn’t say anything about whether or not they DESERVE forgiveness. No matter what kind of low-life slimeball they are, forgive them!

3. The fact that they have sinned against you isn’t in question, your reaction to their sin is what matters. Forgiveness isn’t giving them a free pass for what they have done, that is between them & their maker. It’s not saying that what they did was okay, because it wasn’t! It was SIN and it hurt you! Forgiveness is for YOU’RE healing.

Forgiveness is an easy word to throw around, but a hard action to follow through with. It allows you to move on with your life and grow as a Christian. Unforgiveness imprisons you in your pain. It causes physical, emotional, and spiritual sickness. Why live in misery when forgiveness can set you free?!

As parents we struggle with this as well. The worst kind of pain comes when someone tries to hurt or slander one of our children. We go into Papa Bear, Mama Bear mode and want to tear them to pieces! This is not God’s way though. We know that we also must choose to forgive. I can’t even begin to explain how difficult that is! Yet, it is so liberating.

Wallowing in unforgiveness is like this huge, heavy cloud that looms over you. It weighs you down, affects your thinking, and causes deep despair. Don’t ever allow this to take over your life!

What’s the first step in forgiving someone? Pray for them! What?! That’s crazy! Yes, it is. In our natural being we don’t want to pray for them or bless those who have cursed us, but that’s what God wants. God knows that this will free us from the hatred that could destroy us.

There’s this song by Matthew West that gets me in the gut every time I hear it. It perfectly describes the subject of forgiveness:

It’s the hardest thing to give away
And the last thing on your mind today
It always goes to those that don’t deserve

It’s the opposite of how you feel
When the pain they caused is just too real
It takes everything you have just to say the word…


It flies in the face of all your pride
It moves away the mad inside
It’s always anger’s own worst enemy
Even when the jury and the judge
Say you gotta right to hold a grudge
It’s the whisper in your ear saying ‘Set It Free’

Forgiveness, Forgiveness
Forgiveness, Forgiveness

Show me how to love the unlovable
Show me how to reach the unreachable
Help me now to do the impossible

Forgiveness, Forgiveness

Help me now to do the impossible

It’ll clear the bitterness away
It can even set a prisoner free
There is no end to what it’s power can do
So, let it go and be amazed
By what you see through eyes of grace
The prisoner that it really frees is you

Forgiveness, Forgiveness
Forgiveness, Forgiveness

Show me how to love the unlovable
Show me how to reach the unreachable
Help me now to do the impossible

I want to finally set it free
So show me how to see what Your mercy sees
Help me now to give what You gave to me
Forgiveness, Forgiveness

Do you want to hear something amazing? I wrote this devo to help me conquer the pain of unforgiveness. While I sat here typing, the song by Chris August, 7×70 came on the DirecTv radio station I’m listening to. It also talks about forgiveness. Look up the lyrics to that one too. God is speaking… He is saying that it’s time to forgive.


1. Parent: What advice can you give about forgiveness? How does it help?

2. Teen: I know it seems impossible, but you have to forgive. Close your eyes and think of someone who has hurt you. Now say, “I forgive them.” If that is not an issue in your life right now, remember this devo for the future.


Here are some additional scriptures for you & your teen to look up & discuss throughout the rest of the week: Luke 6:36-37; Matthew 5:7; James 3:13; Mark 11:25; 2 Corinthians 2:10-11; Luke 11:4


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