Learning how to forgive is a skill we will use over and over again. Our earthly life is full of hurts, offenses and disappointments, so we need practical ways to overcome.
Take 3 Steps to Forgiveness
1) We must decide we are going to forgive
Choosing to forgive is different than simply knowing that we should forgive. Deciding to forgive an offense is not saying that the offense is a good thing. It only says that we no longer wish to be angry or bitter about it. Some say that what angers you controls you. Choosing to forgive breaks us free from the power that offenses have over our thoughts and emotions.
“Father God, today I choose to forgive because I wish to walk in freedom. Help me to turn over my anger and hurt to you and choose to treat others with the mercy you have shown me.”
2) We must choose to keep forgiving every day
Forgiveness is not a one-time event. Over and over again we will be reminded of our hurts and over and over again we must still choose forgiveness. When we remember our hurts and offenses we must take control of those thoughts so that they will not take control of our mind.
We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV).
“Father God, today I choose to think thoughts of forgiveness. I refuse to keep the argument or anger alive in my mind. Please help my thoughts to be obedient to you.”
3) We must be patient with the process of living in forgiveness
God makes available to us new strength every day because we often have used up yesterday’s amount. We must remember to offer forgiveness each day to those who hurt us.
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness (Lamentations 3:22 ESV).
“Father God, help me to remember how much mercy I need from you each day. Please give to me the mercy I need to be forgiving to others each day as well.”
Melisa Turner is a pastor’s wife and women’s Ministry leader.