Something we need to get and we need to give.
Like you, I have been on both sides of this equation. The hurt that I have experienced because of others and the hurt that I intentionally or unintentionally did to others has caused me much consternation. I am so grateful for God’s forgiveness (and that of others too) and for the restoration He provides.
We see God’s forgiveness in our study of the life of Joseph in Genesis. In chapters 42-45, we find the account of Joseph confronting his brothers as they travel to Egypt to secure grain because of the regional famine going on. This is such an interesting study as we see Joseph testing his brothers by hiding money and even a cup in their traveling bags. We also see quite clearly that Joseph’s brothers were weighed down by the guilt of betraying Joseph and deceiving their father. Joseph too, was very emotional as he sought to understand the current attitude of his siblings and offer a bridge to reconciliation.
Bitterness eats away at us. It poisons our thinking, our speech and our conduct. When we have unforgiveness in our lives, our whole being can become jaded as we strike out at others. It is through the blood of Jesus on the cross that we receive true eternal forgiveness. And it is because of the cross that we can offer forgiveness to others and live at peace with them and ourselves.
Things to Ponder:
Forgiveness is choosing not to remember the wrongs done to you.
Forgiveness is as much for you as it is the other person.
Forgiveness is often accompanied by boundaries to prevent further hurt.
Forgiveness offered by the Jesus Christ is complete.
Who do you need to forgive? Who do you need to ask for forgiveness?
Also remember a key passage in Genesis that colors this story and our lives too; “you meant evil against me but God intended it for good”. The Genesis 50:20 Principle.