Forgive and Be Forgiven

You cannot be forgiven without also being one who can
forgive.

It seems natural to remember the trespass one has committed against you, and to then steer clear of that person, avoiding future negative encounters. But keeping score and holding grudges are exhausting exercises that ultimately harden your heart, and the real results are you have one less person in your circle of friends, and you have dishonored God.

Have you ever been excluded from someone’s circle because you were not forgiven? Would you like to be invited back into that person’s life? What would it take for that to happen? Is there anyone you’ve excluded from your life but with whom you wish you were friends
again? Try forgiving, not just in your mind and heart but in a face to face
conversation. Forgiving is easy to do once you’ve tried it, and can be done often. The more you forgive, the more you will be forgiven. Try it, you’ll see. And on top of that, you will greatly please the Lord!

Your To Do: Identify one person you are angry with, and carefully think about what upset you. Weigh that trespass against all the positives you enjoyed when on good terms with the offender. Go and tell that person you value those positives more than your grudge, and offer your forgiveness. Pray before you speak, and good words will flow from your mouth!

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I am a depraved, morally bankrupt wretched sinner through and through. I’ve attended church sporadically most of my life, haven’t spent a minute in seminary and only recently gave the Bible more than a cursory review. I’ve attended exactly one theology class and I dropped out of that. However, in spite of my moral infidelity, I’ve come to be filled with the Holy Spirit. I’ve learned my salvation isn’t the result of what I do, but rather what Jesus has done on my behalf. I didn’t find the Holy Spirit, He found me. And in our relationship I have invited Him to change me, to use me for His purpose, to conquer my will with His own. Praise the Lord, for even an unworthy, chronic sinner like me can experience and give testimony to His glory!
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