Today we are going to talk about #16 on our list of things we should say more often.
I forgive you
This one goes right along with saying “I’m sorry.” When people say that they are sorry, they are looking for the other person’s forgiveness. Forgiveness seems like a no-brainer, but there can be a lot that stands in the way of being able to forgive someone.
The person might still be mad at the person who hurt them and this can make it very difficult to forgive that person. It can sometimes take a really long time for that anger to subside.
The person may not be sincere in their request for forgiveness. If someone wants forgiveness, but they are not sincerely sorry for hurting you, how can you ever forgive them? That can be very difficult indeed.
The person may not deserve forgiveness. The person may have done something really wrong to you and forgiveness may not be deserved.
The real issue is that if you are withholding forgiveness towards a person, you are not really hurting them or making them suffer. Chances are that the person has already moved on in their life. The person you are really hurting is yourself. When you hang on to unforgiveness, it eats away at you from the inside. It can cause you to become bitter and it can steal your joy. Unforgiveness can transform you into being a person you really don’t want to be. It is in your own best interest to just forgive the person and let it go.
Remember that we all screw up too. We ask God to forgive us even though we don’t really deserve it and God chooses to forgive us anyway. If God can do that for us, then we should be able to do that for another.
Our assignment for this week is to offer forgiveness to another person. It may be someone who you should have forgiven for a while now. Get a hold of that person and tell them that you forgive them and mean it. It will feel like a great weight has been lifted from your shoulders. Maybe someone will do something hurtful to you today and ask for your forgiveness. Don’t hold it back. Give that person forgiveness.