Now, you might be saying, “Courtnaye, I know how to forgive.” But then I would respond, “Yes. But do you do it quickly?” That’s the major point here. Listen. I know at times, people can do and say things to you in this life that will make your skin boil. However, we have to be women who will make the conscious effort to QUICKLY forgive, in spite of what others do to us.
Let me add a little more weight to this principle. In the Message Bible, it says in Colossians 3:13, “Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you.” Let’s face it. We NEED forgiveness. God is telling us through this passage of Scripture that He wants us to quickly forgive any offense that comes against us. He’s also saying that He will do the same for us. So we have to be willing to humble ourselves and do this.
With that being said, let me ask you a couple of quick questions. Do you want to be forgiven when you do wrong? When you do wrong, wouldn’t you like God to quickly forgive you? I know that I would. And He has. Thank God! But what if He just decided one day that He was so upset with me that He would not talk to me anymore. Or He would help others and not me. Even worse, He would just de-friend me (like on Facebook). That would be horrible! I would feel so unloved or rejected.
I’m so grateful that He is not like that! Instead, He forgives. And He still loves me in spite of my shortcomings. First John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all righteousness.” (KJV) Praise God! Confession (admitting where you are) and forgiveness cleans the slate. It’s a fresh start! And that’s the way we have to be with others. We have to be willing to talk about it and forgive those who have wronged us by hitting the refresh button. That’s forgiveness.
It’s time to extend more grace and mercy. Jesus said in Matthew 5:7, “Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.” If you want mercy from God, then you have to learn to give it to others. When an offense comes, realize where you are and quickly forgive. Because it doesn’t make sense to hold a grudge, shut the person out, act mean, or look or act crazy with them. If you do, then you’re only hindering our own progress and effectiveness. And guess what? Most likely, the person you’re upset with has gone on with his or her life, while you’re still holding a grudge. Can you say…”BONDAGE!”
Let them go. Fight to love people in spite of what they say or do to you. And stop replaying in your mind what was said or done in the past. Remember, “Love keeps no record of when it has been wronged.” (See 1 Corinthians 13:4 NLT). You have to get rid of the record. Trash it. Start over. Be kind. Make things right and love them so that you can move on. What this does is show them God’s love operating through you. It’s also spiritual maturity (character growth).
I’ll never forget a time when someone was offended with me and I didn’t know. I was going on with my life, while this person was still upset with me. Now, here’s the lesson in this. I was doing life, while she was still harboring an offense against me. Who was in bondage? Are you getting this? It eventually worked out, but I learned something through that experience.
I was on the move. This person wasn’t. She was stagnated. I was moving. Unforgiveness hinders! I would know, because I’ve been on both sides of this real-life illustration. But I’ve discovered that a woman on the move, is a woman who forgives.
So don’t wait. Don’t become stagnated. If you are offended with someone, quickly make it right with God and the person. Whether it’s a friend, sister in Christ, boss, husband, parent, or leader, just humble yourself and do it. If the person receives it, great! But if he or she doesn’t, know that you’ve done your part. The next steps would be to pray for them, love them, go on, and let God work it out completely. Granted, sometimes you won’t need to physically go to a person, you can just quickly forgive them for the wrong against you in your heart, mind, and mouth (for instance, if someone cuts you off in traffic, just forgive them and move on). But if it weighs on you with someone, make it right. That’s the point.
Whatever you do, just don’t let unforgiveness hinder you in any way. God wants you to forgive and He wants to continue forgiving you, but you have to do your part. Jesus says so in Matthew 6:14-15, “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” (NLT) I pray that you’ll make the right choice, because it’s time to become a woman who QUICKLY forgives.
Remember, Jesus is coming back soon! And those who endure unto the end shall be saved. So let’s be ready from the Inside Out!
If you have any questions about how to deal with a particular situation, ask it here or you can email me @ firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’ll get back with you promptly.
***Don’t forget to join me for my next call on Tuesday, April 7, 2015 @ 8:30pm (CST)! This month’s topic is called, “Women Walking in Wisdom.” In order to do what God is calling you to do in this life, you will NEED wisdom. So, don’t miss this call! Tell your friends about it on Facebook and Tweet it! The call number is (567) 704-2763, Code: 12345#. Visit www.insideoutwithcourtnaye.org for more info!
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