Monday, September 17, 2012
Quote of the Day: For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. ― Matthew 6: 14-15
Forgiveness is not an option for Christians. The words above were spoken by Christ Himself telling us in no uncertain terms that if we cannot forgive others then God will not forgive us. Many of us have trouble forgiving others but to not forgive is bad for us. As Carrie Fisher once said, "It's like drinking poison yourself and then waiting for the other person to die." God not only forgives, He also forgets which is something we have trouble doing. However, when God forgives it is like getting amnesty--it's like the thing never happened. That is not true with humans. If my son breaks my window, I will forgive him, but he will pay for the window. There will still be consequences for the things we do in this world, even if we have been forgiven. In twelve step programs, one of the steps is about making amends, trying to atone for the bad things you have done. But even if we ask forgiveness, that doesn't mean it will be given. It is important to ask, but you can't expect everyone to forgive you, only God will always do that. I have forgiven many people but there are some I will never trust and do not want around me or the people I love. I'm sure there are people who feel that way about me, but at least I know I have asked forgiveness from everyone I have ever hurt, offended, or caused discomfort. Unfortunately, it is a rather large number, and many have forgiven me and seemingly forgotten what I did as well. There will always be some who cannot forget even if they forgive. Still, if you believe the Bible, you must forgive those who have wronged you. No options. This is not a guideline--for Jesus said this right after He taught the Lord's Prayer. We must forgive, and we must ask forgiveness. You just have to know that not everyone will forgive you, but that is their problem. You must forgive and ask forgiveness from God. You must also ask forgiveness from others. Period. If you can, you can be free. You may still have regrets, I know I do, but you can only be free if you have both forgiven and asked forgiveness. It is simple but hard.