Forgiveness Is Mandatory
Forgiveness is tough but mandatory. Why are you harboring so much anger and bitterness? Do you really think the person who faulted you is staying up at night thinking about what they did to you?
What happened to you was unfair. It wasn’t right. But are you doing yourself any justice by holding on to all that betrayal, blame, bypass, bitterness, and hate?
*Cue “Let It Go” by Elsa from Frozen*
Forgiveness is the first step in the process towards healing. Before we received the gift of the salvation of Jesus Christ dying for our sins– cleansing our slate –he forgave us.Therefore, before you can experience true healing, you need to forgive.
“Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”[a] And they divided up his clothes by casting lots...Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”[e] When he had said this, he breathed his last."
-Luke 23:34;46 (NIV)
“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”
-Colossians 3:13 (NIV)
Forgiveness was given to us easily by Christ, so we need to “forgive as the Lord forgave you,” quickly and easily. What makes forgiveness easy is that as followers of Christ, we know what it feels like to receive forgiveness easily, therefore, we have the instructions on how to do it.
I know you may be thinking, “but they hurt me, they don’t forgive my forgiveness,” and I want you to know that you are right. They may not deserve your forgiveness and your feelings are 100% valid, however, you don’t deserve for the forgiveness of others, yet alone God either.
In order to truly follow Christ, we must obey His command to:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
-Mark 12:30-31 (NIV)
How can you follow this command when you’re only loving ⅔ of what’s required of you? To love yourself, you must also forgive yourself. Pastor Mike Todd of Transformation Church taught an amazing 10-week sermon series called “F–U: Forgiveness University” where he walked us through the mandatory and practical process of forgiveness. After watching this sermon series, you will be able to walk away forgiving yourself and others easier than before.
I need you to realize how important forgiveness is. It is not for the other person. It is for you to be able to live your life being kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you (Ephesians 4:32, NIV). Through the gift of forgiveness from Christ, towards yourself, and for others, you can elevate yourself into blessing after blessing because you have made space in your heart for love to flourish and grow.
Do not get stuck in the seat of bitterness. Let’s let go of unforgiveness and walk forward in love and understanding as we remember to make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you (Colossians 3:13[a], NLT).
Forgiveness is mandatory for you to live your life with love, peace, and in alignment with the Word of God.
Peace. Love. Blessings.