REAL ISSUE: “How can I forgive someone who was close to me?”
‘And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.’ Mark 11:25,26
RESEARCH AND STUDY
Unforgiveness is more than forgiving someone for their actions, but letting them go. Releasing them from any and all debt, any and all expectation – monetary or otherwise - they may have incurred. For me it was someone extremely close. But yet and still, in order for me to forgive, God had to take me through a healing process.
First, He allowed me to see that person as a woman. Not her role or position in my life, but who she was as a person. That means I had to stand back and observe her from a woman-to-woman standpoint. Once I saw her as a peer, as a woman like me, I was now in a position to see her as an individual apart from our relationship which allowed me to empathize.
Secondly, I not only had to see her as a woman but also remember how old she was when she hurt me. Once I could see this person as a woman at such and such age, God then allowed me to compare myself to where I was mentally, financially, and spiritually at that age. To analyze the decisions I was able to make and the circumstances I was faced with. Once I did that, I was now in a better position to understand why she made her decisions in addition to accepting why she was not able to make better ones.
Once I pulled back the role she was suppose to play in my life, I was able to heal. Once I saw her as a woman at such and such age, and dealing with such and such situations having had these types of people in her life, I was then able to truly forgive her because quite possibly, I too could have made the same mistakes and quite honestly I did more dirt. God forgave me for mine so who was I to not forgive her for hers?
Mind you, I still had a level of expectation for her as to what she should be doing for me now. But as we discussed on yesterday, God revealed that was unforgiveness and that any and all expectations I had for her had to be released in order to get my prayers answered. God gave me the grace to interact with her, even to the point of initiating affection. I honestly do not hold a grudge, carry any anger, resentment, or harbor any bitterness toward her. I’ve even gotten to the point where I don’t rehearse the memories or put her business in the street, even when opportunities present themselves to do so.
God is a healer. Psalms 41:4 says, “...Lord be merciful to me, heal my soul…’and He has done just that. He healed my soul; my mind, my will and my emotions from that hurt and the memory of them. He did it for me and He’ll do it for you.
Pray and ask God to help you to see the person(s)* who wronged you as an individual, apart from the role they play in your life. View them from that standpoint and allow God to direct you on the rest. When forgiveness comes, remember it’s not a feeling and you don’t have to call them and announce you’ve graciously forgiven them. But wait and marinate in that healing before you tell anyone.
Forward this series to those you know need it.
*In the case of where a stranger wronged you, this is a different set of circumstances therefore you should remain prayerful and ask God to help you forgive them. I know there are many victims out there who may never have the opportunity to know, but ask God to heal you to the point where you can forgive and forget. He will, trust me, I know firsthand.
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