Give Forgiveness to Yourself and to Others
Jesus says, “Follow my commandments.” And one of those commandments is to forgive those who have hurt us, betrayed us, or done anything that has caused us harm. His directive is very clear:
“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”
The problem is that while we are often told to forgive, we are rarely told how to forgive.
That was my challenge a few years back. I felt a heavy weight on my soul because of the pain and hurt I suffered from the hands of another person. Even though I had not seen this individual for many years, the burden of the abuse, unkindness, and damage to my person-hood lingered.
I studied every book about forgiveness that I could get my hands on. I read articles. And I talked to spiritual leaders. While I learned a lot, none of them could tell me how to forgive.
I remember reading an article written by a popular Christian author and Bible teachers. She shared the situation of her mother who was a concentration camp survivor. She wrote about the great relief her mother experienced when she forgave her captors.
Wow! Hopefully this woman would be able to tell me what her mother did to experience such deep and profound forgiveness. So I wrote to the author, who promptly replied that her mother had passed and she really didn’t know the steps her mother took to experience the total forgiveness.
Finally after much research, prayer and study, I did find the way to total forgiveness. And I learned that it’s not just a quick change of thinking. It’s an internal work of the heart.