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How often should we forgive?

Then Peter came to him and said, “Lord how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him?

Matthew 18:21.

How many times we should forgive someone is something that troubled Peter and each of us wrestles with as well. Jesus answered Peter and us, through a parable. (Matt.18:22-35).

The lesson is that, those who’ve received great forgiveness should also extend forgiveness. We received great forgiveness at the cross. Our sin was forgiven at the personal expense of Jesus.

When we recognize this, when we see the great forgiveness God has poured out for us, it enables us to extend forgiveness to others. We shouldn’t draw the line.

Let’s focus on the cross as God’s unconditional standard for forgiveness. He didn’t draw the line when we wronged him, and we’ve no right to draw any lines when others wrong us. Amen.

God bless abundantly!

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Relationships

Forgiveness is our spiritual mandate

A zen parable tells of a lonely wanderer on a lonely road who came upon a torrential stream that had washed out the bridge. He couldn’t swim and was afraid to wade across. He built a solid and a heavy raft to carry him safely across the flood. 

On the other side of the bank, he thought, “This is a good raft-if there is another stream ahead, I can use it.” And so he carried the raft for the rest of his life.

Let me borrow from this parable in order to portray a better understanding on this topic. My lesson and application could be different from the original. The common denominator, however, is that there are things that helped us at one point in life, but they are no longer useful. The horrible thing is that we tend to hold them too dear that we’ve refused to detach ourselves from them, and we carry them wherever we go. They have become our relevant burdens.

We must offload the heavy load that is impeding our progress

Think about this: which things were helpful to you but are now useless and you’re still holding them?

If they’re material things, you can help yourself by offloading that junk to someone else who could be in need. That which could be a burden to you now could be a great consolation to somebody else. Let someone carry that burden for you and you’ll be amazed how light and swift you’ll be to fly to the next level.

The only wealth which you keep forever is the wealth you’ve given away.”

Marcus Aurelius.

Forgiving someone who has hurt, violated and harmed us is no easy feat. However, we can choose to forgive

You and I know the pain of being hurt. We’ve been heartbroken. We’ve been despised. We’ve been smashed with crude weapons of unpleasant words. We’ve been kicked on our bottoms, knocked down and down-trodden. The list is endless.

I am not trying to open old wounds, rather I’m trying to help heal them completely. It is time we chose to offload that bitter burden of unforgiveness. It is time we entered into a new realm of healing and freedom.

Forgiving someone who hurt, violated, and mistreated us is no easy feat. It could be like adding salt to the wound. However, when you choose to forgive, you’re fulfilling your spiritual mandate. You’re starting to walk on a new and brighter path toward your healing and growth.

“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.”

Marcus Aurelius.

Perhaps when you consider the gravity of the pain, you cannot reckon how you can forgive.

I recall somebody who was asked to forgive when she was in her deathbed but she declined. Another one declared that she won’t forgive even if they met with that person in hell.

Why carry that heavy burden to the grave and hell when you can choose to forgive and live? No matter what happened you can choose right now to forgive and unlock your door to freedom. I know it is a tough decision to make. But it’ll help you out of captivity.

Those who have received great forgiveness should forgive more

Peter an apostle of Jesus like us was disturbed by this question of forgiveness.

“Then Peter came to Him and said, Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”‘

Matthew 18:21.

Jesus used a parable to answer Peter and us. (Matthew 18:22-35).

“I don’t say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.”

Matthew 18:22.

From this parable, we can learn that those who have been remarkably forgiven should extend more forgiveness. You and I received much forgiveness at the cross. Jesus paid the price for our sin.

When our spiritual eyes open widely to truly see, understand, and embrace this truth, we’ll extend forgiveness to others.

We’ll banish our bitterness from old wounds. We’ll quit liking and nurturing our own way. We’ll not allow unforgiveness to block our way into freedom.

Nor will we fix boundaries and conditions on forgiveness when we’re hurt. Forgiveness will freely flow out of our hearts without force. Because God forgave us without conditions, without limits, infinitely. God’s forgiveness should be the standard for our forgiveness.

Choose to forgive and live, decline to forgive and chain your own feet so you won’t get out of that prison.

Many people think forgiveness is weakness. But it is not. It is a doorway to freedom, to recreating damaged relationships, to living in peace with oneself and others. It is key to restoring lost love and joy.

Apostle Paul had a misunderstanding with Barnabas concerning the ministry. I believe before they parted, they had reached a consensus. Paul cautions that when we’re angry we should not sin by nursing our grudge.

And now, right now, you and I can make this tough decision. You can take your phone and call that person you’ve never spoken to since they hurt you. You can organise a meeting with the other person. You can visit the other one.

You can choose to follow that small voice, the inner voice in your heart that whispers, “forgive.” Don’t listen to the loud voice in your mind, the incessant voice that boasts, “revenge.” Only your heart will tell you the truth. Because it is your heart that is hurting. And it is your heart that will continue suffering if you refuse to forgive.

Give your burden to Jesus

Maybe right now the giant of unforgiveness is weighing you down. Perhaps you’ve tried to forgive but to no avail. Tell Jesus to help you. There’s nothing impossible with Him. He is willing to help you. He is calling on you:

Come to me all those who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest… for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-35.

God loves you!

Kingdom Titbits,

By Joseph.