KEY QUESTIONS ON FORGIVENESS – PART 3
Am I offended?
31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
Many people do not like to deal with this question because bottling issues inside seem easier than dealing with the root of the offence. Offence is a dangerous element that traps people in the vicious cycle of unforgiveness. People try severally to break free and the reason they are still trapped is because the bar that holds them bound is not made of steel but of wrath, anger, bitterness, malice, grudge, hostility, hatred, spitefulness and all manner of resentment. We need to be open and real with our selves, Am I offended? If the answer is yes, then we have initiated the healing process.
Can I separate the offence from the offender?
We need to know that offence is a spirit. We must therefore separate the offence from the offender. Many are quick to react to hurts and circumstances and take it out on the offender. We need to separate these two. The offence is what we need to deal with and ensure doesn’t lead to bitterness and malice. The role of the offender is an agent. One of the examples that come to mind is the newspaper and the vendor, the message we need is the newspaper but the vendor passes across the message. If the news doesn’t go down well with you, you do with take it out on the vendor, he is just a messenger. The action of the offender is wrong but don’t habour hate or reproach in our heart because then we become bound by our reproach. A wise man once said ‘Forgiveness is setting a prisoner free only to discover that the prisoner was YOU’
Am I willing to forgive this offence and offender and let go?
Giving forgiveness is key because holding on to an offence creates a stronghold that just doesn’t give way by mere wishing. We need to be deliberate and destroy the yoke of malice, anger, bitterness and all forms of resentment to be indeed free. Jesus has extended His love towards us even when we were in our sins. Friend, the person you are offended with might never come to reconcile or apologise to you but we need to make a spiritual decision that we will not be moved by what people do or don’t do. We need to stand firm in our liberty in Christ Jesus. God has made you free, let go to stay free.
For further Study
Personal declaration for the day
I will forgive as I have been forgiven by God.
Questions for you to reflect on
How willing are you to forgive ?
How soon do you forgive?