Who Do You Need To Forgive?

“How can we forgive those who do not want to be forgiven? Our deepest desire is that the forgiveness we offer will be received. This mutuality between giving and receiving is what creates peace and harmony. But if our condition for giving forgiveness is that it will be received, we seldom will forgive! Forgiving the other is first and foremost an inner movement. It is an act that removes anger, bitterness, and the desire for revenge from our hearts and helps us to reclaim our human dignity. We cannot force those we want to forgive into accepting our forgiveness. They might not be able or willing do so. They may not even know or feel that they have wounded us.

The only people we can really change are ourselves. Forgiving others is first and foremost healing our own hearts” (Henri Nouwen).

If we follow Jesus, forgiveness isn’t optional. We don’t get to choose if and who we forgive. Jesus says to us that God forgives us as we forgive others. Unforgiveness reflects unbelief, pure and simple.

I’m not saying it’s easy. Jesus said He didn’t come to make things easy but possible. If you have even the smallest desire to forgive, pray to God that He will fan it into flame. Say the words. Pray good things for the other person. Remember that God has forgiven you much.

Forgiveness isn’t about the other person fixing what they did. Sometimes they aren’t even sorry. But forgiveness frees you to love them anyway, the same way that God loved you when you were far away and a stranger to His promises.

I don’t know who this is for, but I know that maybe this will plant the seed that will lead you to a breakthrough of freedom through forgiveness. May God grant you the gift of forgiveness even tonight.

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