Prayer Thought: Forgiven by God, Forgiving by God; Why Can’t I Just Forgive Myself?
“I firmly believe a great many prayers are not answered because we are not willing to forgive someone.”
The idea of forgiveness has always been a fascinating and wonderful thing to me. Unfortunately, the world around us has adopted a “you just have to forgive yourself” mantra. There’s a big problem with this, however. We are powerless to forgive ourselves, or any other for that matter, without Christ. It is Jesus Christ that forgives you, NOT yourself. Even deeper still is the fact that due to Christ’s blood shed on the cross for the forgiveness of sins, not only are we forgiven much, but we forgive much in return because we’ve been forgiven. Catch that? It’s on Christ’s merit, not our own doing. We are then filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy as we live in an understanding way with fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, and are given the ability to forgive.
As we come to know a deeper level of God’s forgiving grace in Christ, our attitudes toward others begin to change. We become more gentle and understanding. Not necessarily more lenient on other’s sin, but certainly more understanding in how you deal with the person who has sinned against you. So, this week make it a priority to ask the Lord if you have any unresolved resentment or strained relationships due to unforgiveness. As long as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone…forgive as the Lord forgave you.
Father, thank You for Your incredible forgiveness in Christ. Thank you that because of this grace that I’ve been afforded, I can be gracious and forgiving of others in my life. I ask that You impress on my heart any unforgiving spirit in me so I can forgive others as You have forgiven me. In the mighty name of Jesus, Amen.
Make it a priority this week to heal a broken or strained relationship by forgiving or granting forgiveness to someone. Have that hard conversation you’ve been putting off and see how the Lord honors your obedience.
Clayton J. Elliott, Kontaktmission USA
Director of Pastoral Ministries and Prayer