I remember five years ago, when I deliberately chose once and for all to forgive those who had wounded me over the years. It involved people I regularly interacted with at church and work.
In my mind’s eye, I dumped it all on a garbage heap and burned it. When I looked back there was nothing left but smoke.
Every time, I was reminded of the incident and was tempted to look back, I only saw blackened earth. There was nothing left to remember or react to.
On my journey to wholeness over the past few years, I have learned that offense throws me completely off course and away from the purpose and plans God has for my life.
Unforgiveness, and its children anger and resentment, created a current in my life that pulled me backwards and worked against the moving of the Holy Spirit.
It was an extra weight in my boat as I navigated up the river of life. I was not gaining ground spiritually and my boat was sinking.
Unforgiveness attracted the debris of judgement and criticism causing me to be judgmental and critical of others.
For the believer, forgiving others is essential for our spiritual growth. We are the only ones it really affects.
I began to understand that I was the one in control and I needed to take responsibility for my response to those who offended me.
People who have an offense are thin-skinned. They interpret all actions through the eyes of their offense. They become offended over the most trivial things. They become offended over things that are not offendable.
They become perpetual victims. No matter what you do for them, it is never enough, because you can’t make right an offense that they refuse to forgive.
Forgiveness is the decision to drop the offense and let it go.
Similar to Biblical forgiveness, you are forgiving those who don’t deserve it. I often use a measuring stick to remind myself of how much I have been forgiven as it reveals how much I must forgive others.
Forgiveness unleashes our potential and it allows us to grow spiritually.
Let’s make a deliberate decision to allow forgiveness to flow through you and overflow the offenses, judgements and criticisms that show up in the river of life.