How many times have you heard someone say, ďIíll forgive you this time, but you owe me?Ē The reason they feel the person owes them is because in reality they havenít forgiven that person. If they would have truly forgiven them, then they would have ďcanceled the debt,Ē and nothing would have been owed.
Many good Christians are carrying around extra baggage. They are weighed down with inner hurts and resentments and the result is they are being destroyed.
In 2 Corinthians 2:10-11, Paul said that he forgave everything. He then goes on to say that we should not be ignorant of the devilís devices, and one of the devices, or tools, he uses against the church is unforgiveness.
Unforgiveness, if not taken care of, will consume you. Bitterness and revenge creep in easily and then sin is born.
Once a man told me that he was not holding unforgiveness, he was just hurt. Letís get real. We are just calling unforgiveness by a more acceptable word. When someone hurts you and you hold on to that offense, thatís unforgiveness and unforgiveness displeases God.
Some people are waiting around for the one who has wronged them to repay them somehow. Again, letís get real here. Thereís no way that people who have wronged you can ever repay you. You just have to let it go. Forgiveness means to LET IT GO! You just have to decide to cancel that debt. They canít repay you the years of hurt, and even if they wanted to, they couldnít. God is the only one who restores, not man. You just need to LET IT GO!
Satan does not want you to forgive anyone for anything. He wants you to hold on to every hurt and pain. He wants you destroyed and he knows that unforgiveness will do it.
Jesus said in Mark 11:24-26, ďTherefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them. 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 in heaven forgive your trespasses.Ē
Jesus said that if we donít forgive others, then God will not forgive us. We could elaborate on this, but how much clearer could Jesus be? If we donít forgive, we wonít be forgiven.
Once a lady said, ďBut you donít understand. I canít forgive this person who has hurt me and my family. My hurt was not imagined. He really did hurt me.Ē Well, thatís the point. The ones who really do hurt you are the ones who need forgiveness. Jesus died for the guilty, not the righteous. Only the guilty need to be forgiven.
And, let me say this. Sometimes the one in unforgiveness is the only one miserable. All the time youíre miserable, the one who hurt you is probably out having a good time. Forgiveness is for you. Forgiveness will set you free. Donít be concerned about the other person. Just let it go. Sometimes your unforgiveness doesnít even affect the other person. Thatís the way unforgiveness is. The one that is destroyed is the one who wonít forgive.
Holding on to unforgiveness is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.
You may say, ďI already have, but they have done it again. I canít keep forgiving them.Ē Yes, you can. When Peter asked Jesus how many times he was to forgive his brother, Jesus said there is no limit.
Unforgiveness is a device of the devil. Donít let the devil destroy your life. Let it go.